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School opening Discovery Zone to community

By Kim Walter

Starting Tuesday, Oct. 9, residents of Shenandoah County will have monthly access to Signal Knob Middle School's Discovery Zone.

The interactive technology center features 30 computers, 20 iPads, 10 Kindles and an Xbox Kinect, among other things.

Chandra Greco, the school's IT resource teacher, said the project has taken a team effort, and the school is excited for residents to check out what the Discovery Zone has to offer.

"We wanted to give the community an opportunity to come in and see what our students are growing up with," she said. "This is how they're living, and this is how they're learning."

Students and teachers at the middle school have constant access during school hours. The community access is scheduled for the second Tuesday of each month from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., and Greco said that might change depending on the amount of interest and need coming from the public.

The Discovery Zone is staffed throughout the school day, and Greco said teachers can book it for a day because there are also teaching tools available that are not in every classroom. She said the room has "great collaborative work tables," which are beneficial to the students.

During the open house, Greco will be on hand to help anyone with questions concerning the devices and how to work them. Refreshments also will be provided.

"We just want to give all members of the community a chance to work on something, whether it be research, or a resume, or even working on something with their child," she said. "It's a really awesome atmosphere to learn in, and it's something we're really proud of."

Signal Knob Middle School is located at 687 Sandy Hook Road, Strasburg. For more information on the Discovery Zone or Tuesday's open house, contact Greco at clgreco@shenandoah.k12.va.us.

Contact staff writer Kim Walter at 540-465-5137 ext. 191, or kwalter@nvdaily.com.

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