Latin School of Chicago

Latin Magazine Winter 2019

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In the fall, students in Derek Haverland's computer graphic design class used much of the equipment in the studio to create Day of the Dead skulls that were etched in plexiglass and lit up to create a 3D effect (read more about this project on page 18). Lower schoolers have ventured over as well, most recently with Lower School Integration and Computer Science Specialist Fiona Deeney. Students in the Design Challenge after-school program visited the Innovation Studio to use the laser cutter machine. The students drew pictures, and the machine scanned them and then engraved the drawings into the wood pieces. The Learning Commons also contains a quiet reading area with seating for 40 students. "We wanted to make sure our introverted students had a space where they felt comfortable too," said Greer. Space for eating is designated with tile flooring and easily can be reconfigured for trustee and parent meetings or keynote speakers. The three screens can project the same or different images. An elevated space at the front of the dining area functions as a stage. Some students recently were treated to an improv comedy performance during breakfast. Faculty used the summer to set up ground rules and expectations. "We made it clear that each grade level owned and could use the space," said Greer, referring to the past practice of seniors tending to take a few, choice spots. "It was a little bit of breaking some cultural habits that had formed," said Greer. Additionally, faculty members sign up weekly to work in the quiet space, with an eye on setting an appropriate tone. "We wanted faculty to be more present and to ensure that student needs are being met." Greer's vision is that the Learning Commons will be used for more arts and academic presentations, similar to the pop-up performances that already have occurred. "We are very pleased with how the space has been used so far, blending leisure with academics, and we hope to continue to build on this," said Greer. 29 LATIN MAGAZINE ยป WINTER 2019

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