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The Nest Learning Space – Ferndale Schools STS Team Spotlight

Ferndale School Team
Ferndale Public Schools student team members standing in front of their display. L to R: Elicia Davis - 10th Grade, Isabel Kolanowski - 12th Grade, Ash Twomey - 12th Grade, Sidnie Jackson - 12th Grade

The 16th annual AT&T/MACUL/MVU Student Technology Showcase took place December 7, 2016 in the rotunda of the Michigan State Capitol building. The event featured nearly 40 student teams from around the state that showcased students demonstrating the use of classroom technology. This is a series to highlight the participating teams. Articles were submitted by each team.

The Ferndale Public Schools student team project featured at the 16th Annual STS at the Capitol focused on The Nest, a Flexible & Collaborative Learning Space.

Ferndale School Student Team Display
Ferndale School Student Team Display

The Nest incorporates flexible learning environments to allow for empowered and student led learning that gives opportunities for students to engage and explore their own unique curiosities and passions. A space to collaborate. The Nest recognizes the affordance of technology and also low-tech/no-tech spaces for collaboration. A space to innovate.

Students and staff have an opportunity to reserve the collaboration stations for group projects, utilize the flexible learning and classroom spaces, engage in SAT preparation, visit Khan Academy, take advantage of classroom support opportunities, use the space for peer to peer tutoring, and access online tools for research based assignments. They can also participate in some very engaging hands on STEM projects, build using the MakerSpace kits, create, innovate, and interact with the Lego Wall, play a game, study, read a book, or print out assignments for classes.

“The Nest has turned into a place to be. We couldn’t be more excited to share this space re-design and to continue to allow students the opportunity to be involved in the design process as we move forward, ” Ferndale High School teacher Charlotte Oliver said.

The Nest also challenges students to become accountable and responsible while also fostering creativity and critical thinking. Through providing scaffolded learning experiences that push students out of their comfort zones, The Nest hopes to develop innovative problem solvers ready to tackle the complex challenges of today’s world.

For more photos from the event visit http://sts.macul.org/photos.  

Team Teacher/Mentor

Charlotte Oliver is a Business Teacher for Ferndale High School. For more about The Nest visit http://fpsthenest.weebly.com/.


Ferndale Public Schools operates an early childcare center, two elementary schools, an intermediate school, a middle school, two high schools, one alternative education program, and one adult education school located in four square miles in south east Michigan. They educate over 3,000 students each year. For more about their schools visit http://www.ferndaleschools.org/.