Opened in 2017, the I.D.E.A. Hub offers students a space to Innovate, Design, Engage, and Apply themselves as they grow into creative problem solvers and empowered digital citizens . Using tools and technologies such as laser cutters, 3D printers, virtual reality equipment, and a range of photography and video gear, students practice generating ideas and bringing them to life while mastering new technologies. The assets in the iHub are integrated across the curriculum so that all students have access to the space. From providing French students the experience of walking down the Avenue des Champs-Élysées through virtual reality to Visual Art and Design students transferring their designs onto wood and stone with the laser cutter, the I.D.E.A. Hub has quickly become a center of creative activity on campus!
The educational technology resources at Ursuline Academy have been chosen to enhance the student learning experience while facilitating communication and collaboration. Ursuline Academy has a 1:1 student-owned iPad program that places a powerful learning tool in the hand of each student, faculty, and administrator. Additionally, there are multiple sets of laptops allocated to academic departments as well as Apple and PC desktops in the library and iHub to ensure equitable access for all students. Each classroom is equipped with whiteboards and Apple TVs to give teachers the opportunity to develop interactive lessons. Google’s G.Suite for Education provides a myriad of learning tools and serves as a resource for collaborative and reliable cloud-based computing. Through the use of online textbooks, apps such as Notability, and online class spaces like Google Classroom, students master the skills required to thrive in a digital world.
The Science Wing is equipped with state-of-the-art labs which students utilize to perform hands-on experiments. The scientific method comes alive as students design and conduct experiments while examining the principles of biology, chemistry and physics in action. Data gathering, inquiry, interpretation and reporting are done using a portable wireless laptop cart equipped with probes and print capability.
Robotics programming is another aspect of Ursuline Academy’s technology curriculum. Students are introduced to programming in the lower grades and can continue to advance to more complex levels to include robotics competition. Students in 7th and 8th grade can join the Junior Robotics Club, the Junior Plaids, and high school students participate in Robotics Club, also known as the Robots in Plaid.