Bells. Lockers. Lectures. Notes. Textbooks. Problem Sets. Papers. Too much homework. Not enough sleep. If this is your vision of life in high school, you’re about to see it turned on its head. This is what your average Wednesday at Revolution School could look like, so get ready to dive in and get inspired!
Wake up feeling refreshed and excited to start your day. Our wellness program emphasizes quality sleep, so you made sure to get your 8 hours the night before. You shower, dress, and make yourself breakfast. While you’re eating you browse the morning’s headlines and an article about gentrification catches your eye. It definitely relates to your Neighborhoods in Transition inquiry project, so you add it to your curated reading playlist and plan to dive in when you get to school.
You’re just in time for Reading Hour. You settle into a cozy beanbag chair with your eReader and make several notes on the gentrification article to discuss with your inquiry facilitator later on. You’re excited to have 20 minutes to continue reading the novel your advisor recommended to you.
Two of your friends have just arrived with coffee in hand (and one for you). They chose to come late today and will stay later for the afternoon reading hour instead. They are “buzzing” about the same article you read this morning. It’s all anyone can talk about in your Neighborhoods in Transition small-group seminar. A few of you make plans to visit the neighborhood from the article after school and see if you can observe any of the changes firsthand. Your group also make plans to follow up with one of the community activists interviewed in the article and see about volunteering some time for their cause and learning more about what they do.
Time for advisory! Normally you use this time to check in with your advisor and the rest of your advisory group on your individual learning progress, but today you’re teaming up with a local chef to prepare lunch for the whole school. You’re making fake-meat burgers with a chef from a local vegan cafe. As you form patties and chop veggies in accordance with what you learned in your safe food prep certification course, you and your advisory group practice your presentation on the environmental and societal impacts of meat farming, and finalize provocative questions.
Lunchtime! You didn’t realize that the art installation from a project on housing would be up today… the first multimedia piece you see on your way from the Test Kitchen to the Cafe challenges you to consider whether historical house designations can protect families from being priced out of their neighborhoods. The vegan burgers are a huge success…and so are your questions. You overhear your classmates engaging in a spirited discussion of the ethics of meat production, the confluence of taste and privilege, and whether humans were biologically designed to eat meat. Food for thought…
You head to Math Lab. You’ve been brushing up on algebra in order to better understand the physics of boat-building for your inquiry lane on WaterWays: The Ways of Water, so you talk through a few sticking points with your math instructor before settling in to work through some practice problems. Across the room, three of your classmates are crowded around a laptop and a series of sketches. They’re working through their equations on voltage and amps to determine whether the electric outboard motor they are building will have enough power to move their boat. Our instructor keeps reminding us that the laws of physics are an excellent form of conflict resolution!
It’s time for Wellness, and after all that sitting you can definitely use some exercise! A rowing crew you observed while collecting river water samples as part of your WaterWays inquiry lane got you interested in rowing, so you and your classmates head to a local rowing club where you spend a pleasant hour practicing your synchronized strokes in a sunny afternoon on the Schuylkill.
Your school day has officially come to an end, but it’s really nice on the river so you spend a little extra time there before gathering your group to head to the neighborhood from the article. There, you take some photo and video of your findings, then settle into a coffee shop with your laptops to look up census data and average rents. Of course, three classmates also happen to run by at the same time doing cross-country team training to prepare for a meet at Fairmount Park later this week.
You want to make an infographic of your findings, but you’re not quite sure how. No worries—tomorrow will be fully devoted to your Neighborhoods in Transition inquiry lane, so you can talk to your advisor about the best community resources for graphic design. Maybe you’ll visit a local design agency to see how they create infographics for their clients, or talk to an exhibit designer you met at a museum when the mastery visual art students did their recent student exhibit there.
You say goodbye to your friends and head home. You’re ready to kick back with some pleasure reading, have dinner with your family, tackle a little homework, and hit the hay. It’s been a busy day!