Spring 2017 Review and Welcome Fall!

Lab Atlanta launched officially in January 2017 with a pilot cohort of 10 students from Atlanta area public and private schools. It was a semester filled with learning as we prototyped, pivoted (our favorite word last spring), and performed while responding to our new, dynamic, and exciting learning environment. What follows is a brief overview of the inaugural semester as presented to our many supporters. Most telling are the student reflections, some of which are included here, and the incredible testimonials from parents as well as colleges and universities who visited us last year. (Many of these can be found interspersed throughout our website.) 

We are in the midst of another focused pilot this fall before opening our doors to a full cohort of students in January. Some very exciting announcements are forthcoming on that front. Behind the scenes, our Lab Atlanta Advisory Board launches this month with our first full board meeting. You can read more about our extraordinary members who are representative of a broad swath of Atlanta here

Thank you to all who are walking alongside us in this journey to reimagine school as a broader community and to celebrate the rich, diverse, creative, brilliant young minds that are ripe to make a difference in Atlanta. And, many thanks to the donors who are making this dreamwork possible. 

Conversation at Lab Atlanta

Conversation at Lab Atlanta

Meet Sarah:Sarah is one of the inaugural students at LAB Atlanta. She just turned 16 this month, and is enjoying the new freedom. She has been a resident of Atlanta most of her life. Sarah was born at Northside Hospital, and lived in Buckhead for a few years before relocating to LaGrange Georgia. She moved back to Atlanta after three years, and has resided here since then. She loves to read, bake, clean and organize, make collages, and decorate. Her passion in life is to learn, not simply memorize, but truly learn. By attending LAB Atlanta, she hopes to finally live out her passion.

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MOVING DAY: 40 Inwood Circle and Updated LabAtlanta.Org!

MOVING DAY: 40 Inwood Circle and Updated LabAtlanta.Org!

Early this Monday morning our associate director, three full-time faculty, and I opened the doors for the first time at Lab Atlanta's new home here at 40 Inwood Circle. Tucked behind The Temple, Invesco and Steelcase (and across the street from SCAD's Digital Media Center and the long-time home of WSB-TV) the Iconologic Building is such a welcoming spot. We occupy 3 floors of this 4 story building with uber-creative friends downstairs, loads of spectacular natural light, and 7,000 square feet of community rooms, galleries, student studios, partner spaces, and faculty offices...

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MAKING SENSE OF ATLANTA

MAKING SENSE OF ATLANTA

My favorite topic of conversation with people who relocate to Atlanta is to find out how they make sense of it. This is not an easy task in a city that pretty much moves around the clock and offers a cornucopia of things to do to keep you entertained and informed. With time though, newcomers gradually build their own experience of Atlanta through the places in the city where they live, work, and play...

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Thinking Things

Thinking Things

Thinking things. One of the key concerns I have as an educator and a parent is how little we ask our students and children to do this thing called "thinking." We have conditioned them to react, respond and fill in the blank—to jump through the next hoop- but we have done little to prepare them to "figure it out." In our rush to get to the next thing on the filled-to-the-brim daily calendar or the next content area in a mile-wide and inch-deep curriculum, we adults do all the heavy lifting. And, yet we wonder why we are all so tired and why students/our kids keep looking at us and asking what to do next.

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SCENES FROM THE STREETS OF ATLANTA

 SCENES FROM THE STREETS OF ATLANTA

I detest Atlanta traffic. If you have lived in this city long enough, you too might feel a sense of dread when it comes to tackling the morning, afternoon or weekend rush hours. Despite the long commute times, stressful drives, and occasional feelings of social isolation, we drive. We view driving as a necessity, not an option...but the only sound choice. Yet, in making this choice, we miss out on fully experiencing the world. We miss out on community. We miss out on “seeing.”  After all, who has time to contemplate the architecture, people or cultural landmarks at a stop light? We have places to be and people to see. We no longer live in the moment. The geography has become a distraction.

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REVENGE OF THE USER

REVENGE OF THE USER

On most days, I say to myself and others: “It is a great time to be a student.” I say this with respect to all the new technological advances and tools to which students currently have access. I would even argue that we are at the crux of the golden age of design. Anyone with internet access and a modern cell phone can shoot, edit, and publish a short film. Anyone with a modern computer or laptop can create a three dimensional Computer Aided Design (CAD) drawing. Anyone can take this CAD drawing and print a prototype using a desktop 3D printer. The line between imagination and reality is disappearing.

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