Below are a few of the experiences students can look forward to participating in through the Invent Center for STEM and Innovation.
Science, Writing and Research
Our upper school Science, Writing and Research course is unique to the Rochester area and rarely duplicated nationally. In this course, students learn about the profession of science, the culture of science, and the literature of science. They are then challenged to design and investigate their own research study for an entire school year with a professional mentor. Students then present their work as part of a formal symposium along with undergraduate researchers at a local college – a capstone to a challenging and rigorous project. This course is also unique in that student research is published in our own scientific journal- Research and Discovery, AC’s Journal of Student Inquiry.
STEM Engagement Diploma
Beginning in 8th grade, students can choose to pursue the STEM Engagement Diploma, a unique program that allows students the ability to dive deeper into the pursuit of their interests and studies. Designed to offer students choice, autonomy, and accountability, the requirements for the STEM Engagement Diploma serve as a road map and every experience a student has leads to the next one.
Students who participate in our Maple Sugaring science elective in middle school learn firsthand about the science of maple sugar collection and processing. They research weather patterns and record data until just the right moment, then tap the maple trees on our beautiful and spacious campus. For weeks, they collect the sap, and then take turns staying up for days to boil the sap into syrup – checking density, monitoring color, quality and temperature – for the perfect and most tasty product. All that careful scientific practice is worth it for the taste of maple syrup that they harvested and created!
In our lower school FIRST Robotics program, competition and collaboration are both required for a successful team. Our youngest robot engineers build the machine, with their teammates learning the code required to make the robot solve tasks, and budding program managers and technical writers preparing a presentation pitch for the day of competition. Students clamor to participate – so much so that we have expanded this program to include all of fifth grade and expand to younger grades.