Level Up Village (LUV) is growing rapidly in New Jersey, where it is running courses at eight schools across the state this fall, including Rutgers Preparatory School, Kent Place School and Delbarton School. A pioneer in Global STEAM (STEM + arts) enrichment, Level Up Village promotes design thinking and one-to-one collaboration on real-world problems between K-9 students in the U.S. and partner students in the developing world.
Rutgers Preparatory School was Level Up Village’s first partner in New Jersey, starting with Global Inventors/3D printing in 2014. Students were paired with partner students at iEARN in Karachi, Pakistan, and together, they learned about electricity, the engineering design process, computer assisted design (CAD) and 3D printing. The final project was to design and 3D print solar-powered lights for use by their partner students, who don’t have consistent access to electricity. Rutgers is running the same course for a third time this fall, as well as Global Minecraft City Builders, two levels of Global Video Game Designers and Global Storybook Engineers, Jr.
“Schools get nudged in the right direction through the support of Level Up Village,” said Kevin Merges, Executive Director of Global Education Programs and Director of the Innovation Center at Rutgers Preparatory School. “We all know what we should do, but do not have time to create something new and build the connections. Level Up Village takes all the hard work out of the problem and makes it easy to do the right thing.”
At the heart of all Level Up Village’s pioneering Global STEAM courses is one-to-one collaboration with Global Partner students in developing countries. Together, students take the same STEAM courses in two locations and collaborate virtually through video message exchange.
“Level Up Village’s cutting-edge STEAM courses equip students with the skills they need for the 21st century and empower them to make a difference,” said Neesha Rahim, Co-Founder, Level Up Village. “We make it easy for our school partners to implement our leading-edge STEAM curricula by giving them everything they need, including comprehensive teacher training, supplies, and careful management of the global collaboration process.”
When U.S. schools partner with LUV, they also directly sponsor global STEAM education in developing countries: a portion of the tuition is used to deliver the same course to students at one of LUV’s Global Partner organizations, many of whom are living on less than $2 per day.
Level Up Village will host an informational coffee on Thursday, Oct. 15 at 9am at Cafe Beethoven in Chatham, New Jersey for PTA parents and educators in Chatham and surrounding towns, who are interested in offering LUV’s global STEAM courses at their schools and community organizations. Coffee participants will receive a variety of STEAM (STEM + Arts) resources they can implement immediately, at home and in their schools.