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This school year began with the close of the construction project that added new locker rooms, new science rooms, new entries and renovated spaces for other classes and Fairfield students. Yet, tucked away on the top floor of the building were three rooms that people had a vision for, but no set plans were made. The idea was a 21st Century learning space with new and different furniture, flexibility, technology to make collaboration easier, as well as bright and stimulating colors. This was a vision, but there was not a plan as to when this would happen. So these rooms went under a little transformation through construction, but then they sat waiting for the next step.
That next step was taken as the year began. Plans were made and meetings took place, then in January, the demolition began. The first step was to take out a wall and the ceiling. Then new walls were built to provide flat surfaces that would later be painted for "whiteboard" space. Paint and laminate were put on the walls. Carpet was put on the floor and technology was installed. In some of the final stages, the ceiling was replaced and new furniture arrived. A lot of hard work went into this room from Fairfield's own maintenance staff to an outside contractor that specialized in areas beyond our abilities. On Monday, April 18th, the room was opened to the staff for the first time!
On Monday, April 18th, the staff at the high school was exposed to this room for the first time. They spent the afternoon experiencing the room as students might experience the room. This is a new space. This room is not all about the technology in the room, but instead it is a shift in how curriculum is delivered and the students research and share information.
During the first week the room was open, members of the technology team spent most of their day in the room being available to help plan class activities and learn how to operate the room. Even though there can be very "low tech" activities involving collaboration between groups, the room is still controlled by an iPad. This brings a new level of anxiety to some staff members, but with help and guidance, the staff became more and more comfortable with the room and the steps needed to engage students in this new idea about education.
While the district is waiting for one more delivery of furniture pieces, they are planning a public open house in the near future. Please keep your eye on the website and watch for announcements about this time to experience our new learning space.
Click on the slide shows below
to see some of the students at work
in the room in their classes, as well as some photos
before construction was complete.
Jasmine Crighton the news director from Western Illinois University came to Libertyville Elementary to do a story about the fourth grade news team. Click on the link to see the story. https://youtu.be/pQeLFriXOoA
On Monday, April 18th the teachers and administration got together to celebrate education and those that help make it all happen. Beyond the retiring staff, the FCEA sponsors an award for the "Friend of Education". This award goes to someone who comes in and works with students at the school beyond their normal profession, or might be someone who helps sponsor students at their business, as well as any other way they help to impact our student's lives. These people are nominated by staff members and and the nominations are reviewed by a committee to select the winner(s). This year, one Friend of Education award winner was Dr. Marty Gleason for his work in the elementary schools and his work to help support the football teams of the area with mouth gaurds each year.
Following the "Friends of Education" presentation came the Fairfield "Teacher of the Year" award. This is an annual award that is given to a teacher in the district who can be nominated by other staff members, students and community members. Each nomination is reviewed by a committee also and a winner is chosen from this pool. This award is sponsored by FEDA (Fairfield Economic Development Association), which has membership provided by several businesses in the Fairfield community. Each year they sponsor a golf outing to raise money to help support this award. The winning teacher recieves a plaque and $2000 award for their work with our students. This year's recipient comes from one of our high school staff members:
Mr. David Kraemer, FHS Art
FCSD/FEDA "Teacher of the Year"
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