Young minds make things and make things happen.

 

The modern classroom is helping young thinkers and doers bring science and technology to life.

 

No matter their age, students hardly ever sit still. Capturing them in action requires a scientific approach of my own.

Imagine what you could with an hour or two in the garage-like Tinker Lab.

 

The need to compete on the world stage continues to fuel an ongoing overhaul of the American education system, particularly when it comes to STEM – science, technology, engineering and math. This has led to changes in the concept of the “open classroom” and it was just such a learning environment that Greg was asked to photograph on behalf of 1100 Architect, a New York based architecture firm that had just completed an addition of a hands-on “Tinker Lab” to Germantown Academy, a private school in the Philadelphia suburbs.

 

If it was good enough for Apple and Hewlett Packard, it’s good enough for the students of Germantown Academy.

 

With school still in session and actual students engaged in their projects, this would present a challenge, but one not unfamiliar to Greg. Years of experience being “on the scene” to get just the right shot for his clients has taught him a rare commodity these days: patience.

The renovation of Germantown Academy included new interior corridors to connect classrooms.

The renovation of Germantown Academy included new interior corridors to connect classrooms.

 

Here it became a matter of waiting for and seizing on those decisive moments when students were interacting with each other and their creations.

Kindergarteners get a crack at making projects.

Kindergarteners get a crack at making projects.

Students work on their iPads to create fact-based videos about planets.

Students work on their iPads to create fact-based videos about planets.

As proficient with an iPad as generations of the past were with chalk on slate, maker spaces like this encourage young minds to think open-endedly – to explore not just “what,” but “what if?”

Students can work in teams or pursue individual projects.

Students can work in teams or pursue individual projects.

As these images show, the future looks brighter than ever.