There is no better example of what we are about than our fellows. Please watch their project summaries and see the fruits of the hard work they do in the Baden Academy Media Lab.
About our Lab
The Baden Academy Charter School Media Lab is a center for creative inquiry, experimentation, and discovery. The Lab’s innovative educational approaches empower a community of learners to bring to fruition real-world projects in science and technology partnered with mentors and professionals. It is located on the first floor at Baden Academy Charter School.
Read our Mission and Core Values.
The Lab is an atmosphere unconstrained by traditional disciplines and supports cross-discipline efforts to generate worthy ideas, engage in critical research, prototype using out of the box thinking, imagineer great design and beauty, reflect on the skills and relationships built and creatively present the fruits of project/passion-based learning.
The Lab takes its cue from several ground-breaking innovation labs around the country.
- CMU’s Entertainment Technology Center’s interdisciplinary approach combines technology and fine arts with a focus to produce artifacts that are intended to entertain, inform, inspire, or otherwise affect others.
- CMU’s CREATE Lab’s mission to empower technological fluency and create socially meaningful innovation and deployment of robotic technologies and electronic prototyping.
- The d.school at Stanford focuses on alternative methods of problem-solving and allowing the type of problem we want to solve shapes how we should use the tools of design thinking.
- MIT Media Lab’s ground-breaking antidisciplinary approach to the development of systems to improve the way people live, learn, express themselves, work, and play.
Students are encouraged to take risks, pull others across perceived boundaries, and engage all members of our learning community – administration, teachers, and students alike – to discover and apply new possibilities for advancing our mission.
Thinking, working, and learning both “outside the box” and “beyond the clock” of the traditional public school model, students and faculty working in the Lab apply unorthodox learning, teaching, and research strategies to envision innovative solutions for overcoming barriers to educational success and achievement.
Research Fellows Program
Beginning on Grade 3, Baden Academy Charter School students have the opportunity to apply to become a Research Fellow in the Media Lab. Fellowships are at least a year-long project (meeting about 60 minutes a week). Students, groups of students, teachers, or classrooms collaborate to write a book, create digital artifacts ( YouTube videos, websites, mobile apps), or compete in national and international STEM competitions. Fellowships produce artifacts worthy of portfolios and college (or grant) applications. Students have mentioned that the world seems so much bigger to them after they begin a fellowship.
You are invited to help your child apply to become one of these Research Fellows and work to become a STEM Athlete, Digital Storyteller, and World Changer. Research Fellows are supported to design robust and creative inquiries into new STEM frontiers that ignite their passion and celebrate their unique brilliance. They produce meaningful projects and unique contributions that don’t simply add to their resume but engage them as autonomous and purposeful learners.
We help you pick your topic! Fellows choose from diverse fields of study which pique their imaginations and resonate with their unique talents and individual passions. Their real-world project suggestions must make valuable contributions to the community that will be shared and disseminated with published materials, digital artifacts, competition entries, and teaching opportunities. A discussion with a fellowship coordinator allows us a chance to partner with your child’s interests with real-world scientists, charitable organizations, and successful entrepreneurs looking to support students pursuing STEM.
Once accepted into the program, research fellows engage in projects that instill and strengthen a 21st-Century skill set of innovation, critical thinking, collaboration, emotional intelligence, resilience, leadership, and vision. Research Fellows will meet weekly in small groups in the Baden Academy Media Lab for discovery and collaboration. An annual STEM Family Night marks the celebration of accomplished goals and a time to pause, evaluate, and redesign goals for the future.
Mentors from around the globe are solicited to assist our research fellows face the challenges of their project. Mentor communicate their own experience and takes a special interest in helping this student develop into a successful professional. Baden Academy Media Lab Research Fellows mentors are specifically expected to:
- Help the Research Fellow arrive at clearly stated goals and objectives of any proposed research projects;
- Monitor the fellow’s research experience once a month to discuss progress, results and plans for next steps;
- Complete formal evaluation forms at the end of the school year.
Mentors are invited to join the fellows at the annual celebration at the end of the school year if they are near, or a Facebook Live event if they are far. Contact Dr. Ellen Cavanaugh in the Media Lab with your project ideas or desire to help.