Meet Kim Walker

What is one of your favorite topics to teach? What do you love about teaching your subject? 

I love introducing our youngest learners to the world of STEAM! I'm amazed by innovations in STEAM fields and how they impact our everyday lives. It's exciting to be able to share that awe with our girls and watch their faces light up!

How has technology affected your classroom practices? 

Thanks to technology, I'm better able to help our students see and understand the world around them. For example, our Pre-Kindergarteners were fascinated by the fact that they were able to see the moon during the day. Using AR technology (Google Expeditions), we were able to view images of the moon up close, in an interactive way that was not easily doable in a classroom setting earlier in my career.

What has been the best robotics project you’ve been able to incorporate into your curriculum? 

The best project for me is the one that is most impactful for my students! Introducing our youngest learners to the screen-free KIBO robot several years ago is one project that comes to mind. For most of our students, it was the first time that they had touched or held a child-focused robot, much less pieced it together and programmed it! Those girls are now in second and third grades working with Ozobots, and I can still remember how thrilled they were to interact with KIBO!

What is the best part of being innovative in the iWonder Lab? How does it directly affect a girl’s learning experience? 

The iWonder Lab was founded on four key principles: building girls' confidence through discovery, amplifying their voices, helping our girls of color believe that there are STEAM careers for them, and supporting our girls as problem-solvers. The best part of my job is the privilege of seeing our girls work towards these goals through each learning experience.

How have you been able to assist teachers in incorporating the iWonder Lab into their curricula? 

I've always thought of my position as an opportunity to be a second set of hands for our teachers when they are designing and facilitating learning experiences. Over the last five years, I've been able to co-plan and even co-teach content for students. I helped redesign the Kindergarten Invention Convention (students now use empathy to inform the design thinking components of the project); the 3rd grade social studies curriculum (students created a marketplace to demonstrate various economic principles and examined the impact of trade, imports, exports, language, and currency on the marketplace experience), and helped redesign the 4th grade Regions Fair and Notable Women projects.

How creative do both students and teachers get in the Lab? What are some of the more creative projects that have stood out to you?

The iWonder Lab was created to inspire our students to use their imaginations, curiosities, and wonderings to make innovative connections to our curriculum. And they certainly have! Some of the most creative projects through the years include, when PreK students designed solutions for nursery rhyme characters. Kindergarten Genius Hours students used Sphero robots to create original works of art. First graders used Dash, Sphero, and Ozobot robots to code parade routes for the annual Thanksgiving parade. And 4th graders used robots, littleBits, and virtual reality goggles to share their learning at their Regions Fair. To name just a few.

What’s something we don’t know about you? What fun fact about you would surprise people? 

I have little to no sports talent, but if I did, I'd want to be a volleyball player. I once started a college intramural team and was the worst one on it! However, I do love a good challenge, so I ran two half marathons in my 20s and Broad Street in my 30s. But, at the end of the day, I still can't do a cartwheel!

Mrs. Walker

Started at AIS: 2010

Teaches: LS Director of Technology Integration & Innovation, MS Advisor for Brown Girl Believe, and US Advisor for the Akilah Club