Giving Young People a Voice in School Design

The Youth Design Team are a group of students from William Smith High School who are volunteering their time and expertise to help design better learning opportunities for younger students.

By interviewing other students and reflecting on their own middle and high school experiences, they’re bringing student perspectives into the school design process, and shaping the vision and values of the Studio School -- especially in areas that are important to them, like cultivating a supportive and safe school climate, and building strong student-teacher relationships.  

And we’ve been keeping them busy! Led by mentor Adam York, members of the Youth Design Team have:

  • visited nonprofits and cultural institutions in Denver to talk with younger students about what they need from a learning environment,
  • helped facilitate a game design workshop with teachers and students,
  • and brainstormed ways to cultivate student leadership in the early stages of The Studio School.

Many of the Youth Design Team members will also be participating in a 3D Prototyping Intensive with Denver Public Library's ideaLAB. In this week-long course, they will imagine ideas for a legacy gift to The Studio School that will be constructed in the Spring of 2015.

They’ll also have the opportunity to facilitate a "Boss Level" workshop this Fall, leading other students in their community in an experience to enhance learning through games.