"Skin in the Game"
Skin in the Game Proposal Narrative
Skin in the Game (SIG) is an innovative Science, Technology, Reading, Engineering, Art, and Math (STREAM) based initiative that will impact 30 mathematics, literacy, science and visual arts teachers and 1100 students, grades 4 through 10, over a 3-year period. SIG will focus on three phases of planning, implementation, evaluation, and dissemination of a STREAM-based curriculum in three NYC Community School District Ten schools, PS 159, PS 205 and MS 45 and three nonpublic schools, St John’s, St. Phillip Neri and Mt St. Ursula Academy. District leadership, school administrators, classroom teachers, English Language Learner (ELL) and bilingual support specialists, as well as library media, visual arts and technology specialists will develop a pathway from elementary to middle school to support the effective use of a blended learning model to improve students’ academic achievement and promote digital literacy. SIG will support the development of a comprehensive plan for STREAM-based learning with a published curriculum map of units of study that spans from elementary through high school.
SIG will include professional development and mentoring of teachers, aimed at increasing capacity for educators to rethink when, where, and how students complete different components of a learning experience. Each participating learning space will become a laboratory for hands on STREAM-based project development, integrating mobile devices, digital media, cloud-based collaborative spaces, principles of game design, 3D printing, and AR/VR experiences.
SIG will promote working in a team-building approach where students participate as designers, engineers, documenters, and strategists creating STREAM-based projects, aligned with NYS Math, Science, and ELA curriculum standards. Online tools such as Google Classroom,Nearpod AR/VR, and Zulama, will provide teachers with an online curriculum platform, while scaffolding student learning from grade to grade. For example, in elementary school, students will apply the fundamentals of game design to create board games from nonfiction texts, leading to the development of video games, at the middle and high school levels. While exploring the transition from playing games to designing games, students will exercise conceptual, strategic and critical thinking, as well as communication, collaboration, creativity (4C’s) and planning skills promoting an environment of 21st century learning across all content areas.
The Digital Age Learning (DAL) team will partner with district staff and lead school principals to build a cadre of 18 teacher ‘experts’ during phase 1 and 2 to support 12 additional teachers and specialists in their schools, during phase 3, in the development of the program. This will insure the opportunity to build capacity for turn-key training and bring the project to scope and scale for implementation in additional schools throughout the district, beyond the grant period. Professional development will be provided both face-to-face and online and will be followed by in classroom support and modeling for all participants. DAL will also provide training and support to all schools and the district for publishing program artifacts including program documents, materials, curriculum maps and student exemplary work that is handicap accessible and meets the Creative Commons License requirements, using a district Google Site, promoting dissemination of all project work to be shared to a broader community. SIG will include an outside evaluation firm, Metis Associates, to guide in development and implementation of evidence-based evaluation tools to monitor program strengths and weaknesses during phases 2 and 3 maximizing opportunities for program modification. The goals of SIG are to create a comprehensive evidence based strategic plan for STREAM-based teaching and learning, build capacity for digital leadership, to address the academic needs of students and to publish materials and artifacts for dissemination of a STREAM-based curriculum to a broader community.