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Islands of Brilliance utilizes project-based learning which allows our students to grow their intrinsic capabilities and practice communication, increasing their likelihood of independence as adults. IOB design workshops create a space for students to explore creativity through the use of technology, during which they learn technical skills and grow confidence in critical social and peer-to-peer interactions. Students are matched one-to-one with mentors—design field professionals—which not only changes public perception of this disability, it also paves the way for future higher education and employment opportunities. An experienced, licensed special education teacher, with paraprofessional support, oversees all workshops.
During a typical design workshop, our “creative teams” work on a project—from initial sketches through building it using Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator—that results in a colorful 18″ x 24″ poster each student takes home. In addition to completing the class with an expanded knowledge of software design tools, our students leave with intangibles that are far broader and more important—a collaborative experience, sharing and presentation opportunities, conversation, friendship, and most of all a sense of accomplishment.