Pyne Arts
Magnet School

Designed around Pyne Arts’ needs and goals, AceraEI’s work enables student’s growth in conceptual problem solving, creativity, and initiative. Teachers become change agents through professional development around AceraEI tools and pedagogy. The multi-year project includes implementation of a School Success Dashboard to measure and monitor progress.

Whole School Partnership Model

Whole Staff Professional Development Workshops

Teaching by Tinkering

Creative Mindset

  • Presenter Slideshow (May, 2019)

  • Creative ideas to try with young makers

  • Reflection Card 1

  • Reflection Card 2

  • Reflection Card 3

Hands-On Activity Stations

  • Critter Bots Activity Guide 

  • Toy Hacking Activity Guide

  • Hack, Repurpose, and Reinvent Activity Guide

Project Days on Early Release Days

Synthetic Polymers

Enchanted Electronics

Growth Mindset

  • Presenter Slideshow (February, 2020)

  • who is a maker-alisha

STEAM Change Agent Teacher Leaders

Engaging Remote Learners with Project-Based Learning

Designing PBL for SEL, Core Capacity, and Content Standards Goals

Measuring Change

Teacher Perceptions & Practice

  • Teacher surveys measuring mindset, confidence, skills, knowledge, and practice
  • Interviews

Key Indicators

  • May 2019: 44% of teachers (N = 32) not confident able to implement creative, hands-on activity. 34% of teachers (N = 32) not likely to implement. Needs to implement include materials, technological knowledge, help aligning learning goals, peer support
  • Sept and Dec 2019: 100% of teacher implement hands-on activities during early release days. 
  • Jan 2021 formative assessment of STEAM Team Leaders (N = 6):
    • Most used performance are 1) graphical and/or written responses, 2) essays, and 3) tests. Growth areas: Maker projects, science experiment reports, letters to stakeholders, participation in simulations, artistic presentations, and oral presentations of research. 
    • Most used evaluation tools and strategies are 1) co-created rubrics and 2) point scoring on tests. Growth areas: qualitative feedback, student reflections, teacher designed or student co-designed rubrics.
    • Teacher confidence assessing student learning strongest in 1) content knowledge, 2) organization/planning, and 3) problem solving. Growth areas: collaboration, communication, creativity, emotional awareness, initiative/self-direction, perspective taking, and systems thinking.

Student Perceptions

  • Student surveys focusing on student wellbeing and school culture. Oct 2019 and Dec 2019, we pilot tested an 8-question survey. This instrument was revised and implemented in Mar 2021.

Key Indicators

  • Oct 2019: Low average rating on Student-Adult relationships.
  • Mar 2021 Student Wellbeing & School Culture Survey (N = ) based on MCIEA SQM Survey:
    • Growth Mindset Scale average: 
    • Grit Scale average:
    • Positive Affect average:
    • Valuing of Learning average:
    • Sense of Belonging average:
    • Cultural Relevance average:

Administrator Perceptions

  • Interviews focusing on shifts in teacher instructional practice, student attendance and engagement, and parent engagement

Key Indicators

  • Feb 2020: “What I saw today when I walked around was a different kind of enthusiasm. I saw kids who were hyper-focused, who were as engaged in their circuitry as they were in their art and their content. We were taking learning that was connected to a unit of study that already exists in Lowell Public Schools, and we were amplifying it. We were bringing in the project-based elements, we were bringing in the art elements, and we were bringing in the circuitry to a unit that otherwise was very traditionally based. What I’m seeing now is teachers being able to think differently about how all the different units of instruction that we have can be amplified to intertwine STEAM education in much more organic ways. This results in student work product that they have a ton of ownership over and are extremely proud of. Kids were holding themselves to a higher standard, and that is really exciting to see.” – Wendy Crocker Roberge, Pyne Arts principal, on “Enchanted Electronics”
  • Dec 2019: Student attendance at Project Days exceeds typical days.
  • Mar 2021: Parent attendance at student-led conferences exceeds traditional conference numbers.

School-Wide Practices

Key Indicators

  • Dec 2019: Acera-designed project (Enchanted Electronics) customized by STEAM Team (N = 10) into grade band projects tied to grade level and class unit.
  • Mar 2021: 100% participation from teaching and support staff in student-led conferences. Principal says new practice will be adopted long-term.

District-Wide Practices

  • Feb 2020: MacAuliffe School adopted same strategy as Pyne, utilizing Early Release Days as “Project Launch Days”

Qualitative Feedback:

“For these conferences, I saw the most parents I’ve ever seen. Parents appeared very happy to listen to their students talk about school.”

“I truly loved this format. It was great getting to celebrate the students “Glows”. Often times, conferences tend to lean towards mostly “Grows”. I was very impressed with how thoughtful their personal glows and grows were.”

Copyright © 2019 · All Rights Reserved · K-8 STEAM School
Phone: 781.729.3489 | 5 Lowell Avenue Winchester MA 01890