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Photo Essay

Students can step inside an astronaut’s’ boots to experience life and research onboard the international space station with online science courses offered by the Virtual High School, which supplements public school instruction.

Community helped design Hampton Bays Middle School, which opened in 2008, on Long Island in New York. The LEED-certified building can be used for town hall meetings and adult learning classes, and offers a community garden.

Miami-Dade County’s BioTECH @ Richmond Heights—a conservation-biology-focused STEM high school that opened in 2014-15 with help from an $11 million federal grant—focuses on zoology, botany, genetics, ecology, chemistry and environmental sciences.

On Kids Yoga Day this spring, children across the nation learned downward dog, the tree and the frog, among many other positions. One instructor says that students need just five minutes of bending and breathing to shed stress and re-focus on classroom instruction.

For Portland Public School students in Oregon involved in The Circus Project, tumbling, acrobatics, juggling and conditioning activities help them learn to trust each other and themselves more.

Teachers are coming out of classrooms to build trust with parents. Teachers visit K8 students in the fall to learn more about families. A second home visit in the spring is about building academic skills and sharing information.

Kicking a soccer ball might feel a bit like poetry—the power of your foot sending the ball curling through the air to a teammate or into the back of a net. Washington, D.C., teacher Julie Kennedy has for the past 20 years paired verse with the world’s most popular sport to provide a safe haven for thousands of urban students.

Photo Essay: A ball pit, trampoline, squeeze machine, swing, balance beam and tactile boxes offer a sensory break from overstimulation—bright lights, loud noises and constant motion of a classroom—to elementary students at Woodbury City Public Schools in New Jersey.

Teaching students to dream high is one thing. Teaching them how to help others fly safely is something left to ambitious districts.

Learning to grow vegetables and flowers. Digging in the dirt. Understanding how seasons affect plants. Such learning experiences for students come with a green school roof.

Promoting green school roofs is part of New York City’s larger mission to combat air pollution, conserve energy and reduce the amount of stormwater flowing into sewers and waterways.

Green roofs also reduce the need for air conditioning, thus lessening the “urban heat island” effect—a phenomenon in which concentrated human activity and energy use make metropolitan areas hotter.

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