Amazing Discoveries Start Here

Ursuline Academy introduced Project Lead the Way (PLTW), a comprehensive approach to STEM education, to students in Kindergarten through 4th grade in the 2016-17 school year. PLTW Launch engages students at a young age, building confidence, growing interest, and putting them on course for strong accomplishments in middle school, high school and beyond.
Project Lead the Way Launch - Kindergarten through 4th Grade
Through Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Launch, students become problem solvers. Students use structured approaches, like the engineering design process, and employ critical thinking. They apply STEM knowledge, skills, and habits of mind, and discover that trying different approaches and solutions is an essential part of the learning process. As teachers and students learn and discover together, education becomes more engaging and meaningful for everyone.
PLTW immerses students in hands-on activities, projects, and problems that build upon each other and relate to the world around them. The program creates an integrated learning experience, blending computer science, engineering, biomedical science, and more. Whether designing a car safety belt or building digital animations based on their own short stories, students engage in critical and creative thinking, build teamwork skills, and learn to try and try again when faced with challenges. Throughout PLTW Launch, accompanying e-book stories capture students’ imaginations, encourage cross-disciplinary learning, and add relevance to the classroom.

A few examples of the hands-on challenges PLTW Launch students engage in:
• Designing a robot that delivers supplies at a hospital
• Constructing a rescue method for a trapped zoo animal
• Proposing methods to prevent the spread of illnesses
• Designing and developing a tablet game
• Creating a video or podcast to teach others about concussions

Giving students early experiences in the world of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) helps students learn to feel comfortable seeking solutions to new problems, connect classroom lessons to the world around them, and discover how to employ critical thinking. A solid foundation of skills such as these puts students on an early path to success, from classroom to career.

About Project Lead the Way
Project Lead The Way (PLTW) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and the nation’s leading provider of K-12 STEM programs. Through world-class, activity-, project-, and problem-based curriculum, high-quality teacher professional development, and an engaged network of educators and corporate partners, PLTW helps students develop the skills needed to succeed in our global economy. PLTW courses are aligned with Common Core State Standards for Math and English Language Arts, Next Generation Science Standards, and other national and state standards.
Future Plans Realized!
In the 2017-18 school year, we have extended the Project Lead The Way curriculum through middle school (Gateway) and into high school (with subject specific classes in engineering, biomedical science and computer science) to provide Ursuline girls with all of the tools they need to compete in an ever-expanding global society that values critical thinking and skills in the STEM areas.