While students were away for the summer, the dedicated teachers and staff of the Margolin Hebrew Academy-Feinstone Yeshiva of the South were working around the clock to prepare the building for the new school year. Over the past five years, the school has renovated several areas throughout the building including offices and shared spaces, the gym, and the Beit Midrash. On this year’s agenda? Transforming existing classrooms into 21st century learning environments.

Classrooms in the Elementary Wing were freshly painted and outfitted with new furniture including various options for flexible seating, which allows the students to sit where they choose. New durable LVT flooring was installed throughout the wing, and walls were adorned with educational materials and inspirational quotes encouraging a growth mindset. Mrs. Charna Schubert, MHA Principal of Grades 1-8, shared that “the newly decorated and designed classrooms bring a fresh energy to the school. Not only do we have new spaces, but we are creating innovative and fresh learning experiences to fill these rooms throughout the year.”

On the heels of the classroom renovations, construction will begin this fall on the brand-new Mary Pikelny STEAM Center, thanks to a generous donation from the Winestone family. The STEAM Center will be located in the Elementary Wing but will be accessible and developmentally appropriate for students in Pre-K through 12th grade. The space will feature a 900-square-foot Innovation Lab, a top-of-the-line Science Lab, and a fully equipped Art Center. In the Innovation Lab, students and faculty will work collaboratively on projects that include 3-D printing, moviemaking, coding and engineering.

“We are incredibly grateful for this opportunity, which will allow us to expand our current STEAM education opportunities and give our students access to dedicated spaces in which to study art, science, and engineering,” said Head of School Rabbi Benjy Owen.

In addition to providing various new outlets for innovation in the S.T.E.A.M. Center, the school is looking forward to introducing its new Woz U Drone Program in the fall. The program is designed as a high school elective, and MHA-FYOS will be the second school in the nation to offer it. Students will be instructed in aviation mechanics, soldering and repairing electronic equipment and drone flight. They will actively build drones in small groups, learn the mechanics and science behind their operations, and then learn how to fly them. All students enrolled in the course will sit for a drone license at the end of the year.

If you haven’t visited the MHA lately, now is the perfect time! Please email jessica.baum@mhafyos.orgor call 901.682.2400 to schedule a tour.