Why Sierra should have an I-lab

Jade Swiryn, Staff

Many schools have an I-lab elective on top of all their other ones. I-lab, or innovation lab, teaches creativity and, unsurprisingly, innovation.

In I-lab the teacher might give you a problem and it’s your job to come up with an invention to solve said problem. They could bring in an expert to talk about their field. The learning isn’t “sit down and take notes,” it’s hands on and interactive.  

In past years, Sierra actually had an I-lab class, and it was required for all students. We eventually replaced it with enrichment and then advisory. If we brought it back it wouldn’t be hard to find teachers who would teach it. “I enjoyed teaching kids how to be innovative, though other teachers didn’t like it as much,” Kelly Swiryn said. Not all teachers would have to teach I-lab, it would just be the ones that wanted to.

Many companies use I-lab to expand their field, to create new products, and to pursue new ideas. I-lab lets these companies find creative solutions to problems. It’s a time to be creative, and solve problems. Most classes don’t let kids be creative and think outside the box. You’re given directions and expected to follow those directions with no room for critical thinking. 

Schools should have a class that let’s kids think critically, because they aren’t in their other classes. Creating I-lab in Sierra would help grow the school and expand the fields that our electives specialize in.