Driving Question: How can we use evolution and computer programming to solve complex problems?
Credits: Biology & Computer Science
Overview: In the GAhhh! Learning Lab, learners will embark on a journey into the fascinating world of computational optimization and problem-solving inspired by the principles of natural selection and evolution. Genetic algorithms (GAs) are powerful tools used to tackle complex and diverse challenges in various fields, from artificial intelligence and machine learning to biology and engineering.
Throughout this lab, learners will delve into the fundamental concepts, techniques, and applications of genetic algorithms. They will learn how to encode solutions, create populations, apply selection, crossover, and mutation, and evolve increasingly efficient solutions through multiple generations.
By the end of the course, they will be equipped with the knowledge and skills to design, implement, and fine-tune genetic algorithms to find solutions to real-world problems.
Feeding the Future LeLab
Driving Question: How can technology respond to the changing environment to ensure a nutritious food supply into the future?
Credits: Biology & Humanities
Overview: Guided by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (2 Zero Hunger & 13 Climate Action) learners will investigate the options, challenges, and technologies that are being developed and incorporated in the international food system.
They will also be joining the Duke of Edinburgh International Award - Bronze Level to receive an internationally recognizable certification for their efforts. Learners will have the opportunity to examine traditional farming practices, emerging Agri-Tech and cutting-edge vertical farms, and other technological indoor farming techniques.
As climate changes and population grows and distribution alters how do we provide food security and look after our fragile planet? Learners will grow food at VERSO using microgreen sprouters, an indoor hydroponic system, and an outdoor hydroponic system.
Push The Limits Le Lab
Driving Question: How can we measure, push, and continuously expand our physical and mental limits?
Credits: Physical Education | Whole credit
Overview: Learners will explore new physical and mental challenges through authentic experiences every week on and off campus. Activities learners will participate on Beyond the Wall trips or led by guest speakers include obstacle course training, climbing, taekwondo, and dancing.
The Lab starts off with exploring different anatomy of the body and systems such as the musculoskeletal, respiratory, and nervous systems. Coupled with biological and social psychology concepts, learners develop insights into what motivates them and learn what techniques will help them push towards continued progress toward individual/team goals. They will also be joining the Duke of Edinburgh International Award - Bronze Level to receive an internationally recognizable certification for their efforts.
Beyond The Walls
Last week learners had fun assessing their physical limits by completing physical challenges and obstacle courses at the Movement Playground for strength training. They have been familiarizing themselves with the obstacle courses and learning more about the muscle groups used for different exercises.
This week learners from both “Push the Limits” and “Feed the Future” took part in a Taekwondo workshop to support them in meeting the physical and mental demands of completing the International Award Expedition.
Nikon Gormley, Taekwondo coach, shared his experiences on how to increase physical and mental sports performance, through his background in Taekwondo working alongside Sports Psychologists. He emphasized the importance of recognizing performance interferences that are unique and different to everyone, and how athletes could perform to maximum physical limits by eliminating interferences. They learned that we all have the potential to continuously improve our performances. In the second half of the workshop, Nikon and his assistant coaches trained our learners in Taekwondo fundamentals such as kicks.
In Q2, learners will focus on exploring and answering “How can I effectively communicate arguments and design a data collection process to answer my research question?”. They will dive into debates and hone their skills in writing argumentative essays and research papers. Additionally, they'll begin formulating an action plan in preparation for Phase 2 of their VERTEX project in the subsequent semester.
We are continuing to build thinking classrooms in VERSO’s Math Labs to put learners in charge of mobilizing knowledge and growing their capability in both math and collaboration. In Algebra 1, learners are studying linear and exponential functions. In Geometry, we’re wrapping up proofs with geometric figures and in Algebra 2 we are nearing completion of our unit on polynomial functions. In Pre Calculus, learners are beginning the second topic of the AP course, different representations of exponential and logarithmic functions.
Research LAB A: CAMPAIGN for CHANGE - Human Rights Movements
Driving Question: How can we design a powerful human rights campaign, drawing inspiration from past movements, to address current issues and drive positive change?
Credits: English Language Arts
Overview: 10 December 2023 marks the 75th anniversary of one of the world's most groundbreaking global pledges: the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Our learners will help commemorate this landmark achievement in human history and continue the fight for Human Rights for all by generating their own campaigns.
Learners will delve into a Human Rights Movement of their choice by analyzing the causes and consequences of relevant historical and current campaigns. They will then ideate and decide on effective methods for promoting and advocating for human rights. Through prototyping and testing, they will design a campaign aimed at advancing their chosen human rights movement. Finally, they will review feedback, make improvements, and actively implement elements of their campaigns to further their cause.
Research LAB B: UNVEILING the DARKNESS - Genocide Prevention
Driving Question: How can a deeper understanding of historical genocides and their root causes empower us to actively work towards preventing future genocides and promoting tolerance and human rights?
Credits: English Language Arts
Overview: As social beings, humans have been contending for power and authority from the beginning of time. The very worst of this sees acts of genocide; the mass murder of a whole group of people based on nationality, ethnicity, race or religion. By learning about the root causes of genocide our learners can stand up for human rights for all!
"Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it." - George Santayana
Learners are exploring various historical genocides, delving into their causes and devastating consequences. They will then examine how these atrocities have been memorialized through poetry and monuments. Through testing and prototyping, they will create initial drafts of poems and design commemorative monuments of their own design. Finally, they will collect feedback, make necessary improvements, and finalize their pieces for an exhibition designed to generate awareness and support the prevention of future genocides while marking the 75th Anniversary of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide
Under the guidance of Coaches Joe and Thomas, Q2 of Power Hour continues to focus on skills and mobility transfer.
In the beginning of Q2, learners focus on different movements such as lunging, quick skips, etc. and apply it to volleyball. Learners will also learn different technical skills regarding the sport before culminating in a few games.
In addition to volleyball, to support learners' overall fitness for Le Labs such as Push the Limit or Feed The Future’s Duke of Edinburgh excursions, learners will participate in conditioning to build cardiovascular and muscular endurance.
Building upon our Consent and Sex education in U-Well last quarter, we are continuing our proactive approach to educate our Grade 9-11 learners about drug awareness and safety.
Our mission is to create a supportive and open learning environment where learners can explore the risks and consequences associated with substance use while cultivating responsible decision-making skills. We firmly believe that this knowledge will empower them to make informed choices. Additionally, learners will have the opportunity to enhance their presentation and debate skills through project-based research.
Should you have any questions or suggestions regarding our drug education program, please feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
We sincerely appreciate your ongoing support in keeping our students well-informed and safe.
In the past two weeks, we have had university visits from Columbia College in Vancouver, Trent University in Ontario, and the ICT program from Mahidol University. The representatives walked us through the admissions process to Thai universities before sharing about their programs.
By Jarret Voytilla