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Community Invited to Design Exhibitions

Design Exhibition

The entire Gibson Ek High School community of students, staff, parents and mentors -- as well as the wider community in Issaquah -- is invited to visit our campus on the morning of March 20.

Students will set up all over campus -- during one of three 50-minute slots: at 9, 10 or 11 a.m. -- each showcasing one project that follows our Design Thinking process. 

"We are so excited to open our doors to the full community for the first time in four years," says Principal Julia Bamba. 

Visitors arriving after 8:30 a.m. should assume the Gibson Ek lot will be full. Look for parking on nearby streets and in the Issaquah Community Center lot. Do not park at Clark Elementary.

Gibson Ek's Design Thinking approach is adapted from the work of Stanford University's, using the following process that will be reflected in student displays during the exhibition: Empathize-Define-Ideate-Prototype-Test. Each student displays one project created following this human-centered framework that requires understanding multiple perspectives, identifying a specific need,
and working to create a solution to that need.

"Design thinking is critical thinking," says GEHS Dean Tonja Reischl.

Visitors should expect to see a wide range of project work on March 20.

"For some students, this is their first design project," says Dean Reischl. "Others have been designing for years, but this time tackled a new area of skill- or knowledge-building. Others are the culmination of months of learning in a specialty area."

Gibson Ek is a choice school open to any Issaquah School District student looking for a more independent, project-based approach to learning. The student body of just under 200 reflects a wide diversity of goals, from college to entrepreneurship to careers in a trade or the arts.

With no traditional classes or grades, Gibson Ek students learn through self-directed projects, incorporating reading, writing, science, social studies and math along the way. Certificated teachers guide and assess students as they work independently, and they lead "Design Labs" -- interest-based mini-courses that follow the Design Thinking process.