Here we will build a list of exceptional, successful and very exciting 21st century schools in existence today. Our goal is to illustrate how they schools are structured - from the building design to the schedules to the curriculum. Here is what exemplary 21st century schools have in common.
The first school we want to introduce to you is the Youth Villages Inner Harbour campus. This school is located in Douglasville, Georgia (just West of Atlanta). I spent three wonderful days at this school in November of 2010, the week before Thanksgiving. It was the most extraordinary on-site visit of my career!
Next, please meet the awesome Zoo School - formally known as the School for Environmental Studies. Located in Apple Valley, Minnesota, this school is connected to, and the students study and work with, the Minnesota Zoo! Watch the excellent video featuring this school, made by the George Lucas Education Foundation. Notice the beautiful "classroom" built out over the water, adorned and shaded by beautiful greenery; then see it the way I did in February, with several feet of snow! (That's amazing to me because we do not really get snow where I live in South Central Texas!)
Anne Frank Inspire Academy is exactly that - inspiring! This school, like the Zoo School above, has no "cells and bells". It is the closest thing I have seen to date that represent the epitome of a school designed for the 21st century!
Joseph Estabrook Elementary School in Massachusetts just came onto our radar! See a slideshow featuring the 21st century attributes of this school, from the land to the playground, the building itself and the curriculum. These educators get it!