Magnet for Innovative Thinking » Magnet for Innovative Thinking

Magnet for Innovative Thinking

/The Porter Middle School Magnet for Innovative Thinking (MIT), is a liberal arts constructivist magnet where students construct knowledge through design-thinking utilizing an interdisciplinary and inquiry-based curriculum.  The MIT magnet program is set to open in August of 2023 with it's first 6th grade class on the Porter Middle School campus in Granada Hills California.   
Vision Statement
Porter Middle School Magnet for Innovative Thinking will foster civically responsible, culturally aware, and empathetic community members who will be empowered to see themselves as creative thinkers who can positively impact the world.  
Mission Statement
Porter Middle School Magnet for Innovative Thinking will work to 
inspire a love of learning by empowering students to construct knowledge using design-thinking with inquiry based and interdisciplinary rigorous and relevant curriculum.
Teaching and Learning at Porter Middle School Magnet for Innovative Thinking incorporates projects that are meaningful to students and impactful to their communities. These real-world projects charge students to be innovative thinkers, creators, and doers and build the skills necessary to thrive in an interconnected and rapidly changing world.
Option 1 (6th-Grade Students)
  • Career Paxton Lab*(One Semester Course)-
    Students are introduced to a few careers of their choice from a carefully curated selection. Students will explore Alternative energy, Computer Aided Drafting, Computer Graphics and Animation, Design and Marketing, Digital Manufacturing, Electricity and Electronics, Flight and Drone Technology, Forensic Science, Home Maintenance Fundamentals, Introduction to Computer science, Nursing, Personal Finance, Structural Engineering, Veterinary Medicine, and Video Production. This is a hands-on class.
  • Introduction to Programming - Creative Computing*(One Semester Course)
    Students will engage in the Creative Computing Curriculum Guide to create computational artifacts through storytelling and games. The Creative Computing Curriculum, designed by the Creative Computing Lab at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, is a collection of ideas, strategies, and activities for an introductory creative computing experience using Scratch. The Creative Computing Curriculum fosters agency, computing, and creativity through computational thinking and inquiry.  
Option 2 (Alternative Pathway)
  • Music (Yearlong Course)*
6th Grade MIT Core Content
 (Inquiry and Project-Based Lessons using Hands On Materials)
Readers Writers Workshop
Literacy Design Collaborative 
  • Integrated Project Based Learning - Narrative Filmmaking - Scriptwriting and Production (6th Grade)
  • Integrated Project Based Learning- Documentary Filmmaking - Scriptwriting and Production (7th and 8th Grade)
IMP Math is taught by a teacher who holds a Single Subject Mathematics credential.  Students will earn Algebra and Geometry credits.  They will have the option to take Algebra 2 in 9th Grade or to start over in Algebra 1.  
  • 6th- Grade Integrated Mathematics 1A- IMP 1A
    Units-The Overland Trail, The Pit and The Pendulum, and Do Bees Build it Best?

  • 7th-Grade Integrated Mathematics 1B- IMP 1B
    Units-All About Alice, Cookies, and Fireworks

  • 8th-Grade Integrated Mathematics 2AB -IMP 2AB
    Units- Shadows, Geometry By Design, The Game of Pig, Small World Isn't It.
History - Read Like A Historian Curriculum
Science - Open Science Curriculum
  • 6th Grade - Light and Matter, Thermal Energy, Weather Climate and Water Cycling, Plate Tectonics and Rock Cycling, Natural Hazards, Cells and Systems.
*Tentative and may be subject to change
Porter Middle School Magnet for Innovative Thinking (MIT) students' middle school experiences will be infused with a spirit of playfulness and curiosity as they learn by doing, exploring, and creating. They build a strong foundation in the creative and divergent thinking necessary to be the innovators of tomorrow. They will spend three years learning through hands-on, interdisciplinary project-based learning structured to cultivate their ability to design actual solutions to real-world problems. Because the students will work on addressing real issues to meet the needs of real people, they will leave the school with a sense of purpose as creative problem-solvers who can draw on a wide set of skills, knowledge, and technologies to improve people's lives. 
At MIT, we believe that students in their early adolescence are still in an exploratory phase of their development. Rather than being forced to choose a specific career track, students at this age should be focusing on deeper discovery through learning that connects to the world outside the classroom. Regardless of what pathway students will ultimately take, they deserve high-quality instruction with their developmental needs in mind. A PBS Newshour report noted that psychologists say that even as early adolescents are motivated by their peers,  they also care deeply about what adults think. They want to be taken seriously and feel their opinions count [they] are driven to contribute to the common good. (Field, 2021) Middle school students also learn best when they are allowed the agency to develop their thinking. Early adolescents thrive when they are allowed to make their own meaning and develop a sense of purpose as they see how their learning helps them contribute to the world around them. Schools should provide students with opportunities to interact with ideas that cross the boundaries of specific subject areas because, in the world outside of education, concepts and ideas overlap in messy, fascinating ways.
For more information, please contact Magnet Coordinator Mr. Quevedo at [email protected].