Connecting students to a world beyond their classroom results in deeper, more personalized learning

Youth Today, a national publication that shares news and research with professionals who work with young people in a variety of fields recently wrote about New Hampshire’s Extended Learning Opportunities (ELO) program. The piece focused on ELO programs taking place in three New Hampshire communities and discussed the advancement of student-centered learning, academic rigor, and student responsibility aspects of ELOs. 

An outsider might have thought Nick Fratto was skipping school.

The 16-year-old at Winnacunnet High School in Hampton, New Hampshire, began leaving campus in November as many as three days each week.

Each time, he drove toward North Hampton and didn’t return for nearly two hours.

But he wasn’t cutting class — he was cutting his teeth in the marketing business.

Nick was engaged in what the school calls an extended learning opportunity or ELO. He went to a local business, Larsen Edge Marketing, where he worked on its website and compiled information for clients.

Kirsten Schultz, brand manager at the company, was his mentor.

“She said the work I did was good enough that she would actually submit it to clients,” Fratto said.

Nick kept a log in which he reflected on what he did and learned. He put together a portfolio, and he’ll make a presentation about it this month. And at Winnacunnet High, he’ll receive two credits toward graduation.

Read the full article in Youth Today.