Through a $300,000 multi-year pledge, the Tilles Foundation funded the “Tilles Foundation Innovation Hub” at Miriam School. “The Tilles Foundation Innovation Hub” is helping meet the unique educational needs of Miriam’s students while also preparing them to be successful global citizens in the future.
Miriam School was established in 1956 to serve children in grades K-8 who are of average to above average intelligence, but struggle in traditional schools due to challenges including attention deficits, speech/language delays, fine/gross motor delays and sensory concerns. Through a team approach, small class size and specialized instruction, Miriam School provides a variety of accommodations and curriculum modifications designed to meet the academic needs and support the social skills development of each of its 96 students.
Miriam recently completed a $5 million project to update their building in Webster Groves, MO, which included adding a 12,000 square-foot wing that includes four middle school classrooms, a media center, and a flexible classroom, as well as renovating existing classrooms and shared spaces. The project provided the long overdue opportunity to finally implement a cohesive and flexible technology infrastructure throughout the 25 year-old building.
While “The Hub” is centered in the school’s media center/computer lab, it also provides each of the school’s 11 classrooms with a 65” interactive flat panel display, Apple TV, a teacher AV input and control location, a ceiling-mounted audio system with wireless microphone and input for program audio and a ceiling-mounted wireless access point. The Tilles grant is also providing laptop computers for middle school students and staff and ongoing professional development for staff.
The use of technology in education allows Miriam to expand upon their program’s core strength of individualization. Incorporating technology increases students’ motivation by personalizing lessons to their unique needs and providing immediate and specific feedback. Miriam uses technology to address a wide range of learning difficulties including reading, writing, math, listening, executive functioning, and social skills.
Not only do Miriam students need technology for their educational growth, however, they also need it to acquire 21st century skills: a series of higher-order skills, abilities, and learning dispositions that have been identified as necessary to all students for success in our global society. In addition to the three r’s of reading, writing, and arithmetic, 21st century skills include the four c’s of critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication.
Thanks to the generous partnership of the Tilles Foundation, Miriam is able to help children with learning challenges unlock their potential and succeed in school and life.
For more about Miriam School, please visit http://www.miriamschool.org/