Morristown, New Jersey:
Students at Unity Charter School (Unity) in Morristown, NJ, recently took a trip to Gramby Park to explore the impacts of winter road salting on New Jersey’s freshwater nontidal water bodies. This experience showcased the school’s commitment to educating its students as global citizens and activists.
The students were tasked with collecting data to help scientists make statewide decisions. These real-world experiences are paramount in Unity’s rigorous Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM) focus. STEAM education provides students with the skills to analyze and solve complex problems by using creative and critical thinking, making them well-equipped to tackle real-world challenges such as environmental degradation.
The school’s focus on education for sustainability is reflected in its mission. Additionally, the New Jersey Student Learning Standards require students to construct arguments supported by empirical evidence, evaluate design solutions for maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem services, and apply scientific principles to minimize human impact on the environment. Overall this learning opportunity was enjoyed by the students as it helped make their learning more meaningful.
“Unity Charter School’s commitment to preparing its students for a sustainable future is forwardthinking and it has been at the center of its mission since the school opened its doors in 1998”, said Director of Learning Acceleration & Sustainable Development
Coordinator Jennifer Carcich. She went on to say, “By fostering a love for learning and a sense of responsibility for the environment, the school is helping to create a generation of informed and proactive global citizens”.
The recent trip to Gramby Park and the school’s emphasis on STEAM education and education for sustainability highlights the importance of providing students with opportunities to become active and informed citizens. By equipping students with the skills and knowledge to tackle real-world problems, schools like Unity Charter are helping to create a brighter and more sustainable future for all.
At Unity Charter School, our focus on sustainability makes us unique, but how and why we teach it define our distinction. Our educational philosophy is focused on the development of the whole child—academic, social and emotional—and is approached in immersive ways that foster the development of confident, capable global citizens and 21st century leaders.
At Unity Charter, there are no academic ceilings, allowing students to grow to their maximum potential. If a child needs a greater challenge in any subject area, they are not limited to their specific learning group; For example, it is not uncommon for 4th grade students to take 6th grade math and our middle students can take high school level Algebra, Geometry and Algebra II.