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By Emily Taylor, IV Form
Are Year-Round Islands Off the Coast of Maine Economically Sustainable?
Editor’s Note: Emily created this presentation while attending the Waynflete Sustainable Ocean Studies Summer Camp through partial funding from The Matthews Fund. (For better clarity images, click here for Google Slide presentation)
By Amy Wang, V Form
Constructing a Flowchart in Biology
Editor’s Note: The following description of the assignment provided by Ms. Kimberly Berndt, STEM Faculty–
It can be challenging to understand the complex physiological mechanisms and pathways we explore in Biology. One effective strategy to synthesize, organize, and review information is through visual thinking. We employ visual thinking in a number of ways. In this assignment, students were charged with constructing a flowchart to illustrate their current understanding of how carbohydrates are metabolized.
An effective flowchart takes a complex process and simplifies it in a manner that makes the information more accessible. Flowcharts can be found in many Biology textbooks for this reason. However, the process of constructing a flowchart can be an even more effective tool for learning. Constructing a flowchart requires multiple intellectual tasks. (more…)
By Gillian Yue, VI Form
Unity based Top-Down Shooter Game: Design and Development
I’ve always been interested in video games since I was a child. To me, playing games was never just entertainment; it was also a special artistic experience. While art can be presented in many forms, visually, auditorily or written down, video games are often a combination of different forms, as they need to contain graphics, sounds, and storylines.
This summer, through the Class of ’68 Grant, I worked on an independent game project for the iOS platform, a simple space-shooter-style game with a small variation: instead of simply shooting “bullets”, the player first collects the bullets by tapping on the randomly code-generated paintballs. I chose to work on this project because I’ve always enjoyed playing Space-Shooting games, and I wondered if I had the ability to create something similar. The bulk of the programming was facilitated by the game engine Unity3d, whereas the graphics and audio used in the game were created respectively in Photoshop and Garageband. So far, I’ve had the time to complete the basic structure and logic of the game, with a few characters, background and soundtracks, and I plan to add more artistic components as my project progresses. (more…)
By Izzy Kim, VI Form
Penny the Penguin: Parents’ Best Helper!
This summer, I attended a tech + business program at MIT called LaunchX, formerly
known as MIT Launch. I was admitted as a “hacker,” with my specialities in app development and virtual reality. The ultimate goal of the camp was to create a start-up and pitch the business idea in four weeks. I worked with three other students and together we co-founded Ami. Ami has an ambitious vision of “keeping kids happy and healthy,” and we are taking a first shot at our vision with our pilot product Penny the Penguin. On the outside, Penny might seem like any other penguin plush. Yet, Penny is a kid’s best buddy and the parent’s best helper: Penny can speak parent-crafted messages through a phone-connected bluetooth speaker. Through these messages, children will adopt healthy habits, and parents will find parenting less of a difficulty and more of a joy. Busy parents who accidentally forget to remind kids to “brush their teeth” or “wash their hands” can simply set up a reminder on our accompanying app to have a message played specific times. We tested our products on families living in the greater Boston (more…)
By Dr. Colleen Worrell, Director of the Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning
Productivity, Neuroscience, and Deliberate Practice: Deep Work and School (Part 2)
With the school year off to a frenetic start, I am returning to the topic of deep work, which I wrote about in LEO last September. My article, “Make Deep Work Your Super Power,” was supposed to be the first in a series of posts that would connect Georgetown Professor Cal Newport’s book Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World to school and learning. “Deep work” is the ability to focus deeply on a challenging task for a specific period of time, blocking out all distractions in order to get stuff done efficiently and well. The fact that I’m writing part 2 of the “series” one year later proves that I have yet to master this skill. Indeed, my failure to build deep work into my own practice is, in part, what motivates this post. (more…)
By Sophie Haugen, VI Form
A New Reality for Cancer Patients
“No radiation. No Chemo. No Cancer.” These are the words on the sign hanging from the window of the Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research at the Seattle Children’s Research Institute. Partway through my fifth form year in Advanced Biology, Jack Thalmann and I were fortunate enough to be selected for internship positions at a cutting-edge research lab for one month of the coming summer.
This past August, we traveled to Seattle and lived in Magnolia, an urban-residential neighborhood located a few miles north of downtown Seattle, with Max (‘72) and Marcia Witter. Each day we commuted to the Ben Towne Center and worked in the Jensen Lab, which focuses on immunotherapy as a treatment for pediatric cancer. Dr. Michael Jensen (‘82), the director of the Center, has made remarkable strides and has achieved some incredible success. Dr. Jensen and the staff at the Jensen Lab take an innovative approach to fighting cancer: they collect blood samples from pediatric cancer patients, genetically engineer the patient’s own T-cells to recognize cancer cells, and infuse the treatment back into the patient’s body. (more…)