Into the Wild is a capstone project for 8th grade students that engages them in active and thoughtful inquiry on what it means to be a global citizen. The focus is on the essential question, “What is one way that I can impact social, economic, and/or environmental justice issues as a global citizen?”
All projects must connect to at least one of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Students use the process of design thinking (Empathize, Define, Ideate, Prototype, and Test) to narrow their focus and achieve their objective of bringing awareness to an issue, mobilizing an audience to act, or inventing a solution.
While students move through the design thinking process, they sharpen their skills in time management, giving and receiving feedback, reflecting on challenges, and adjusting their next steps. All of these milestones help students build on successes and failures as they begin to see themselves as citizens seeking change.
This year’s projects are as varied as the students creating them. They include exploring how virtual reality can raise empathy for environmental issues, building a website that encourages teenagers to seek out mental health support, creating a sustainable soccer ball, and creating podcasts, art, or songs. Students will present their projects to friends and family later in spring. As these students progress to upper school, potentially engaging in the work of Wildwood’s Institutes, this experience will help build and strengthen the skills they will bring with them.
- fall 2021