Acera BlogCourtney's CornerGifted Education

Porous walls to the outside world

By March 7, 2024No Comments

Since our inception, Acera has sought to have “porous walls” to the outside world.  We connect learning with real world innovations, we bring in people with new ideas and experiences, and we are a hub of innovation, sharing our work in ways that enrich students, teachers, and others. Most of these endeavors are managed through AceraEI, our separately funded outreach division led by Sarah Zuckerman. Teachers are able to be involved as they are interested, and this work reminds us all that what we do is unique!

What is on deck for March?  


  • Educators from Costa Rica, who are working to build a progressive middle school, will visit and observe soon. They were introduced to Acera by MIT professor Claudia Urrea, and will spend the afternoon of March 13th with us.  
  • During the week of March 18th, 12 educators from Denmark, in collaboration with the Play@Heart project, will spend a week with us to observe how Acera weaves technology and playful approaches to learning!

Partnerships  & Collaborations:

  • We are excited to talk with Curry College to think in new ways about how teachers are trained, and looking forward to a partnership between AceraEI and their teacher training program.   
  • Tufts Center for Engineering Education and Outreach (CEEO) has been placing graduate students as both teachers and researchers within our enrichment and day school program. One grad student, Mohammad Tonkal, who leads our Lego Spike Prime Robotics after school program, also engaged in a research project here (with parent sign off, of course.) Mohammad talked with me this week, seeking our OK to use the Acera name in a future publication on inquiry, project-based and creative education practices, based on what they learned at Acera!
  • Working with a lab at New York University, we are participating in the development of a cutting edge curriculum to help students understand data visualization by monitoring their own brain waves using sensors with Ms. Alexis and Ms. Lauren in a new Creativity Station! The project aims to design authentic neuroscience research experiences for students and capitalize on recent innovations in wearable devices and data tracking technologies to create innovative learning experiences for students that weave together brain, body, creativity, arts and data visualization! 
  • A UMass Boston “Brain Fair” project will occur soon in which grad students and professor Dr. Lisa Maeng from UMass Boston facilitate a series of stations on the working of the human brain.   

There are always new things we are trying and testing; having a flexible mindset and working with inventors and researchers make experiences deeply valuable for Acera students! And seeing visiting educators’ enthusiasm for the experiences, culture. and student engagement they observe at Acera is motivating and a morale boost for us all! 

All the best, 

Courtney Dickinson is Acera’s Founder & Head of School.