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Village Glen School

The Power of Purpose

Ten years ago, a story appeared in Wired magazine about four high school students in Arizona, all of them undocumented immigrants from Mexico, who built an underwater robot which beat a team from MIT in a national competition to take first place. (The original story is re-published here: http://www.wired.com/2014/12/4-mexican-immigrant-kids-cheap-robot-beat-mit/ ) That story has so captured the pu...
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The Hour of Code is upon us!

The week beginning December 8th is being celebrated as Computer Science week, with schools nation-wide being encouraged to spend at least an hour coding. Village Glen has joined the movement and on both the Sherman Oaks and the Culver City campuses will be among tens of thousands of schools promoting at least an hour of code in all of their classes. Why the emphasis? In 25 states, computer science...
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A Progress Report on STEM at Village Glen

Last week, Village Glen had a visitor, someone who had heard about our programs and about STEM at Village Glen in particular. He himself runs a school in England for students with special needs, so it was a rare opportunity to see how someone unconnected to and unfamiliar with our school would view us. His impressions were uniformly positive. He was amazed by middle school students milling about ...
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The Advantage of Autism

Thorkil Sonne is not a household name. Nevertheless, he is a pioneer in changing the perception that the world has of those on the spectrum. Sonne, a Dane, was the technical director of a software company when he noticed that his son, who is on the spectrum, had a keen eye for detail, great persistence, and a phenomenal memory. What Sonne noticed is that his son had just the skills that his compan...
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STEM, AUTISM & Computing

The worlds of STEM and Autism are replete with large variances. On the STEM side, there is a large variance between the number of STEM jobs available and those projected for the future, and the number of qualified candidates for those jobs. The latter is far smaller than the former. A similar variance exists on the Autism side, between the number of high school students on the spectrum who graduat...
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The Arts and STEM

The great divide between the arts and the sciences, what the late scientist and writer, C. P. Snow, called “the two cultures” is of modern vintage—it didn't always used to be so. There was a time when it was recognized that art, as much as science, is directed at understanding ourselves and the world in which we live. Is Picasso’s “Guernica” , his famous and powerful painting executed in revulsion...
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The future of STEM

So, you don’t want to be a physicist or a computer analyst—is there still a STEM job for you? The question is important because over the next decade, occupations within STEM fields will grow almost twice as fast as non-STEM jobs. And the skills that workers will need even at the entry-level are far more sophisticated than they have ever been in the past. As the Alliance for Science & Technolog...
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Commencement Address 2014

We live in a scientific age, one where our culture is infused with the theories of science and its offspring, technology. In 2003, scientists mapped the human genome, the set of instructions necessary to build an entire human being. In 2008, NASA’s Phoenix lander touched down on Mars, and soon thereafter found ice on the red planet. And in 2009, an amputee learned to control a biomechanical hand c...
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STEM and Universal Design

One of the most powerful Universal Design principles is that students with disabilities, like those without, benefit from having material presented to them in a variety of ways: aurally, visually, and kinesthetically. Similarly, students do best when given a variety of ways to engage the material, when they have a choice between giving a presentation, building a model, or writing a paper. The prin...
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What’s Next?

In just a few weeks, students across the country will shake hands amid pomp and circumstance and receive their certificates and high school diplomas. At Village Glen, the scene will be no different. Many students have already heard from colleges and universities, from internship programs and job placements what their immediate future holds. But for our population, for students with an ASD, the dec...
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