The Spark Lab is our makerspace designed for students in grades 9-12. Students have access to 3D printing and additive manufacturing machines, vinyl and laser cutters, a robotics library, woodworking tools, and consumables that allow students to produce both low- and high-fidelity prototypes. Students work on projects such as creative coding, design for fabrication, survey of engineering, product design, and architecture.
Design, Engineering, & Technology
Sparking Curiosity and Problem-solving through the IB
With inquiry-based learning as the cornerstone of the curriculum, the IB educational journey at Dwight empowers students to go wherever their curiosity leads them, become risk takers, and develop design and entrepreneurial skills to solve problems and embrace change with confidence.
These skills include brainstorming, collaborating, and innovating. When coupled with traits such as flexibility, resourcefulness, and resilience, which we nurture within and beyond the classroom, students develop an entrepreneurial mindset. This preparation is invaluable for graduates as they forge their own paths in life and step successfully into the jobs of the future.
As students shape projects of their own imagining, they focus on problem-solving through the IB’s design thinking cycle, which includes inquiry and analysis, idea development, creation and prototyping, and evaluation.
Design thinking begins with empathy, asking students to inquire about the needs, experiences, and challenges of others. At Dwight, students tap into the design thinking process as they devise innovative solutions to practical problems across disciplines, ranging from digital game development and product design to robotics, programming, and architecture.
Students who want to take their projects beyond our makerspaces — or launch new ones — can dive into Spark Tank, our incubator. This signature Dwight program draws heavily on the IB design thinking cycle, teaching students entrepreneurial, innovation, and leadership skills beyond the classroom. For more information, visit our Spark Tank page.
To ensure that technology is a regular component of the learning experience, we provide each student with a device in our 1:1 program. In grades 1-4, students use iPads; and beginning in grade 5, they’re assigned a MacBook Air to use at School and home.
Through Dwight’s technology curriculum, students deepen their critical thinking, math, reasoning, and problem-solving skills. They also learn how they can create — not just use — technology. They begin exploring computer science with the development of computational thinking skills, such as sequencing, order, and direction in Lower School. They also use Scratch Jr and Scratch to create programs that demonstrate their knowledge and creativity.
Upper School students learn to program using Python, one of the most in-demand languages for professionals and new learners alike. Students in our IB Diploma Program can also take Computer Science, offering more advanced training in a variety of programming languages, computer science concepts, and practical problem-solving.