July 14, 2017

Summer Learning at the TGR Learning Lab

Summer is for fun, sun, BBQs—and for many young people, no school! It is a time where students tend to put their books on the shelves and temporarily forget about what they learned throughout the academic year. It is a time where formal learning takes a back seat.

However, all of us at the TGR Learning Lab (TGRLL) believe that summer is about opening doors to new opportunities, thinking about one’s future and getting ahead when it comes to preparing for college. We also think it is a time where teachers can have some fun while they collaborate with fellow educators and learn new activities that can be used in their own classroom.

During the summer months, the TGR Learning Lab offers a number of programs for young people ranging in STEM enrichment classes, junior golf and college access. Through our professional development program, TGR EDU: Create, teachers have the opportunity to spend a week exploring a blend of pedagogy and hands-on applications that will allow them to enhance their curricula and prepare their students for future STEM careers. Through our programs, students and teachers explore their interests, develop new skills, experience hands-on projects and activities and build lasting relationships.

Here are some testimonials from some of this summer’s participants and why they believe in summer programs.

We Are Exploring Our Interests:

“Coming to the TGR Learning Lab this summer has given me a chance to boost my academics in a fun and exciting way. I have been able to learn more about paleo-technology. We recreated ancient artifacts and learned how people used the resources around them and their culture.” – Mikaela, TGRLL student

“The tinkering class helped me become more creative and use my creativity to build things such as a catapult and use circuitry to design scenes that light up.” – Kyle, TGRLL student

“I LOVE playing video games! I took the video game design class and it has let me see the other side of gaming. I have learned how to code and how to write “if/then statements.” – Milen, TGRLL student

“I really enjoyed STEM Studio! It was the perfect balance of theory and practice. The daily STEM challenges were engaging and gave me many ideas that I can immediately implement at my site.” –  4th Grade Teacher, STEM Studio participant

We Are Developing New Skills:

“Participating in a summer program has given me the ability to grow and learn new things. I have learned that the college application process will not be as difficult as I thought because I now have the tools to tackle it.” – Genesis, College Bound Academy student

“Aside from the classes I have taken, I learned that when you work with other kids, especially people you do not know, it is important to do your part and allow others to share their ideas. Do not let your own opinions get in the way of getting the job done.” – Hiyab, TGRLL student

“After attending last year’s STEM studio, I feel like this year’s was completely brand new and nothing was repetitive. I loved both STEM Studio experiences, and I appreciate all the new knowledge I was able to attain at this year’s studio. I look forward to attending again next year!” – 5th Grade Teacher, STEM Studio participant

We Are Experiencing Hands-On Projects And Activities:

“I enjoyed the various activities that gave me a hands-on approach in learning about college. Two crucial activities we did were role playing scenarios that provided practice methods of demonstrated interest and using the website collegegreenlight.com to develop college lists, see which colleges have fly-in opportunities and research scholarships.” – Sambodh, College Bound Academy student

“The TGR Learning Lab summer program has been a great way to broaden the minds of kids everywhere. I have participated in hands-on projects where we used everyday household products and utensils to make and conduct experiments. In the Power of Chemistry, we learned about surface tension, chemical reactions and physical reactions by participating in activities where we made a lava lamp, slime and experiments with dry ice.” – Alvin, TGRLL student

We Are Building Lasting Relationships:

“I enjoyed making new friends. I have met people from different schools who have similar interests and goals. It has been fun and I am hoping to see them again in the fall.” – Lillian, TGRLL student

“This is my sixth year participating in summer programs. I enjoy coming back to take more classes, and interacting with the staff. They are the best!” – Katelyn, TGRLL student

“I enjoyed making new friends in my class where we had to work together to build different robots. We all liked having our robots compete against each other in the different challenges. We cheered each other on!” – Dylan, TGRLL student

“The teacher training was facilitated by world class experts who were not only knowledgeable but generous with their time and resources. The design of the experiences allowed us to get out of our physical “comfort zone” forcing us to constantly work with new people. As a result, I am overflowing with new knowledge and an expanded, high quality professional community.” – 7th Grade Teacher, STEM Studio participant

All of us at TGR Learning Lab know that summer programs are truly valuable and we are excited to provide students and educators the opportunities to learn, expand their minds and participate in activities that will get young people to think about their future and the path they need to reach their goals.

Redefining what it means to be a champion.