8th Grade Students Get Crash Course in Solving Real-World Problems at NuVu

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NuVu is a magnet innovation center for middle and high school students.

Eighth graders from Inly Middle School will be attending NuVu this month, a full-time magnet innovation studio in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Amazingly, Inly is the first middle school that NuVu has ever worked with. Prior to this partnership, NuVu worked exclusively with high schools.

NuVu’s founder and Chief Excitement Officer is Saeed Arida. When asked about the partnership with Inly, Arida said, “We are excited to be working with Inly students who already have a solid base in creative, hands-on learning. NuVu’s unique studio based pedagogy coupled with its emphasis on technology will enable the Inly students to utilize their Montessori background to create innovative projects.” Prior to founding NuVu, Arida worked as an architect and designer working on projects for MIT, LG, Samsung, and Microsoft. He received his bachelor of architecture from Damascus University and then studied design computation at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he received a SMarchS and PhD. His doctoral research examined the intricacies of the creative process to understand what creativity is and how an educational environment can nurture creative learning. The architectural studio pedagogy informed this research that eventually evolved into NuVu Studio where students learn in a hands-on environment with coaches who help students create projects and move through many, many iterations.

NuVu’s pedagogy is based on the architectural Studio model and geared around multi-disciplinary, collaborative projects. With the assistance of “coaches,” NuVu teaches students how to navigate the messiness of the creative process, from inception to completion. Inly students will be given a real-world, open-ended problem and asked to device a solution in two weeks.

“Students get the chance to really show off the skills that they’ve built over their time at Inly in a very authentic and real world situation,” Tschol Slade, director of Inly Middle School, remarks. “As teachers, we know that our students are building next-century skills all the time. Their work at NuVu will make this learning really tangible for them in a really challenging, authentic and fun way.”

Donna Milani Luther, Inly’s Head of School, states, “Inly prides itself in creating partners in innovation to prepare our students for the ever-changing century that they live in. This partnership with NuVu will be a hallmark of the kind of excellence in education that we continue to provide for our Inly students.”

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