If you have an idea for a project concept but are not sure how to make it come true...then this might just be your answer. We connect businesses and schools through a facilitated networking session to develop projects - that enrich student learning to encourage students to understand how their learning applies in a real-world context.
School project leaders and business and community leaders explore ways to collaborate on a the project together. Projects vary by school need, but could include technology-related, environmental, career related types of projects as well as others. During the Cabarrus LINK event, schools and business leaders meet to develop the actual project and create a project plan to be implemented during the semester. During the Innovative Showcase that is held at the end of the LINK Day event, groups make a "Shark-Tank" style presentation to “pitch” their innovative project ideas to a panel of judges. The panel will select a grand winner. All Innovative Showcase participants receive a cash reward to assist in implementing their project.
Not sure what a project looks like? Check out these highlights from past year's projects:
- AT Allen Elementary - Students worked with NC Cooperative Extension to design and implement season extenders and drip-irrigation units.
- Beverly Hills STEM Elementary - Third grade students delved into the racing industry and incorporated learning into their economic unit in social studies and an engineering project that provided real-world context learning in math and science. Partnered with the Charlotte Motor Speedway, students designed an accessory for their race car and raced to see whose car finished fastest.
- CC Griffin Middle School - For several years, 8th graders have created Podcasts/TEDtalks about what matters to them, but teachers were not pleased with the content quality or the recording quality for this project. Partnered with Cabco-TV, an emphasis was placed on storytelling this year and the content improved greatly. Additionally, in working with their partner, the idea bloomed that the sixth grade unit on sound waves would include a project to design a sound booth for the 8th graders to utilize in their recording. This new twist to the sound waves unit brought their learning to reality and 15 of the designs were selected to be built and used by the 8th graders. Click to view Independent Tribune article about this project.
- Cox Mill High School - Students in digital photography became photo bloggers as they dug into the "Real Stories of Cox Mill High School." Their business partner, the Independent Tribune, published the photos and stories in the paper. Check it out!
- Hickory Ridge Middle School - Bringing together technology, art and health students to race for a cause brought new meaning to the CO2 cars project. Now, the group had to work together to design the car, the graphics, Their partner, Troy Selberg, not only brought 29 years of racing industry experience but also team building activities to help the students learn how to work together as a team. View the project video!
- JN Fries STEM Middle School - Designing and coding robots with temperature seeking capabilities to be used in search and rescue missions was what these students experienced. With design and coding expertise, Code Ninjas brought another aspect to the project - experience in search and rescue missions.
- Pitts School Road Elementary - Providing a positive school experience outside the academic world was key to beginning the program - Compassion Creates. Partnered with the Cabarrus Autism Society, an after-school club designed just for Exceptional Children in the Learning Connections Classes at the school. Students along with their high school students experienced fun life skill lessons to develop social skills and confidence. Learn more about the impact this club made in the Independent Tribune.