- Career & Innovation
West Middle School students build community through design challenge
Students at West Middle School recently participated in a schoolwide design challenge designed to help students think creatively while creating new friendships throughout the school.
Students worked in groups made up of sixth, seventh, and eighth graders in order to build new connections. Students were given plastic straws, pipe cleaners, and paperclips to build a tower that would hold up a golf ball. With only 45 minutes, the pressure was on – but students bravely tackled their work while getting to know each other.
This project is one of many schoolwide initiatives designed to continue building a strong community at West Middle School.
“Over the past few years, we’ve reimagined our Back to School night to promote community among families,” explained Principal Mónica García. “We added food trucks and created opportunities for families to connect with each other. We want our students and families to feel connected to each other, which creates a positive and supportive community.”
West also launched a campaign to showcase what community means to its students, where students at each grade level created visual reminders and positive messages about community. Students at West agreed that community was an important part of their school culture.
“Community at West is respecting others and going by our shared values: Community, Achievement, Respect, and Equity,” said seventh-grader Lyla Cramer. “I know that when I walk into this building, it’s a safe place and I know everyone cares for me.”
Kaleb Perez, an eighth-grader at West, shared that community is everything to him.
“Without community, we wouldn’t have a society, and without a society, we wouldn’t be here today,” Perez explained. “Community is not only us as a school, but us in the world.”
Other students felt West was a safe place and that the school worked to ensure students felt supported.
“Community at West is people having your back and just supporting you in a good way,” sixth-grader Cruz Duffy said.