Social Sciences

Dunecrest American School: For clean technology and social consciousness

Written by Mamie M. Arndt

Image Credit: In 2020 we learned that life is fragile but harmony is the key to happiness. At Dunecrest American School we fuse technology with social consciousness in order to help our students understand complex real world problems and to acquire critical skills and empathy needed to resolve them. Our STEAM-led, project-based learning lends itself […]

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In 2020 we learned that life is fragile but harmony is the key to happiness. At Dunecrest American School we fuse technology with social consciousness in order to help our students understand complex real world problems and to acquire critical skills and empathy needed to resolve them.

Our STEAM-led, project-based learning lends itself to fantastic future-forward modules, electives and extra-curricular activities from Pre-KG all the way up to secondary school.

Consider our grade 2 students who are exploring how human choices impact the survival of plants and animals. Specifically, students are examining what role technology can play in reversing bees’ colony collapse disorder and how this will help with food production and animal survival. Using design thinking, students will explore the possibility of using drones to pollinate plants. This exciting unit leverages the PARROT Mambo Drone, Apple’s SWIFT Playground coding language and our students’ future-focused problem solving techniques.

Staying true to its core mission of helping students to realise their power to change the world around them, Dunecrest has partnered with Million Solar Stars Founder and our Middle School Science Teacher, Adam Hall to launch the Million Solar Stars Science course (MSS). MSS connects students with tools to design and engineer hands-on solar power models and to engage multiple stakeholders to increase the number of schools powered by solar energy.

Term 1 has been incredibly busy for our budding clean tech engineers and community leaders! Students explored the feasibility of using solar power on our very own campus as well as using Minecraft and TinkerCAD to model different panel installation designs. Proposals were presented to school and industry leaders. Students also attended a weeklong workshop with a photovoltaic specialist from Namene Solar. On March 6, students and partner AMANA Solar will host a Walk Around the Sun to raise awareness about solar energy through a variety of exhibits and activities.

From events to electives, we mustn’t forget our extra-curriculars. Activities are in full bloom this year at Dunecrest. We have three active gardening and environmental clubs. Working with School Director, Bill Delbrugge, students are caring for almost 100 different flora and fauna. Further they have created an abundance of leafy green vegetables in our 11 hydroponic plant towers and are germinating 150 beans in our dedicated science wing as part of a productive garden initiative.

2020 was a year of reflection. It was a time for prioritisation and gratitude.The year 2021 is a time to harness this awareness and to be an agent of growth and harmony. We are proud of our pioneering offerings, which will continue to grow and evolve along with our students.

About the author

Mamie M. Arndt