We are building a “School Without Walls!”

“Background knowledge plays a key role in students’ reading comprehension — our findings show that if students don’t have sufficient related knowledge, they’ll probably have difficulties understanding text”

Program Overview

Welcome to our “School Without Walls!” The Biome School is where challenge and choice are extended into the broader community to provide a holistic education for children. We partner with community institutions, like the St. Louis Zoo, to establish our micro-schools. The results are semester-long projects integrated into our curriculum and opportunities for students to apply their classroom knowledge to real-life experiences.

The Mirco School at The Saint Louis Zoo provides our students with experiential and authentic learning opportunities.

Students gain unprecedented access behind the scenes during their week at the Zoo. They engage in activities with zoo staff, such as touring the nutritional center, building enrichment items for the grizzly bears, dissecting owl pellets and squids, and engaging in positive reinforcement training with select animals. Students spend time at the Zoo gathering information about their selected animals and collecting data on their behavior through ethograms.

Upon returning to school, learners create their mini museum project. Some artifacts in their mini museum will be research papers about their animal, life cycle puzzles, and a diorama of their animal’s habitat.

MADE Partnership with The Biome is a week-long micro school experience for our 4th graders, extending our Big Question Unit on forces and motion. Students will be presented with a design challenge asking them to use critical thinking skills and knowledge of force and motion to create a marketable product.  Through an intertwined entrepreneurship collaboration with MADE, students will learn the principles of marketing and presenting a finished product. This micro school culminates with a community presentation where the students will showcase their work.

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