2017-2018 Annual Report Now Available

December is a great time to reflect on the events and news of the previous year. We love creating our annual report and being reminded of all the amazing students and teachers we worked with last school year. This year’s annual report has gorgeous photos, amazing stats, and a special thank you to all our […]

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Spoken Word Expands to 6th Grade

Thanks to a partnership with D97, OPEF’s popular Spoken Word residencies have expanded to include 6th grade as well as 7th grade. The original 7th grade program launched in Fall 2015. Spoken Word is a powerful and effective medium for fostering creativity and self-expression in young people.Through both in-school residencies and extracurricular clubs, students learn […]

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Robots and the American Revolution

What if Paul Revere was played by a robot? Working with D97 librarians, we recently began a pilot program for fifth graders combining our popular Geared Up and Robotics programs. The six-week residency excites kids about coding, tech, and robots and provides a new look at the curriculum. Fifth graders at Hatch Elementary are wrapping […]

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Full Steam Ahead on Super STEAM Saturday

Thanks to everyone who came out on Saturday for our annual Open House event: Super STEAM Saturday. Over 100 families representing all of the D97 schools (and a few others) came out to create mandalas, drive robots, write poetry, draw buildings, play with LEGOs and Ozobots and do science experiments.   While students filled out […]

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Spoken Word Residencies Start at the Middle School

  Fall is here and poetry is in the air. Seventh grade students in Ms. Stringham’s Language Arts classes at Brooks received the first Spoken Word residency of the year. Spoken Word artist Christian Robinson (also known as rapper Rich Robbins) met with classes throughout the week and helped students explore the rich tradition of […]

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Back to the Birds at Irving

For over five years falconer and scientist Craig Hendee has been swooping in to Oak Park schools with his Peregrine Falcon, Alvin. This year, Hendee brought a special guest, a six-month old endangered Saker Falcoln named Susie. Hendee works with the International Heritage Conservancy and his hands-on visits are funded by Science Alliance. Over the […]

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Shop, Enjoy, & Donate with Whole Foods

We are thrilled to announce that the the Whole Foods in River Forest will be donating 5% of their profits on October 18 to the Oak Park Education Foundation. All Whole Foods in the Midwest are participating in Community Giving Days, each one choosing a different educational organization. You can learn more about the initiative […]

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End of Summer Soirée for Scholarships

Both new and long-time supporters stopped by the historic home of Mary Jo & Stephen Schuler last Friday night to celebrate the end of summer and support scholarships for BASE Camp. Thanks to our hosts and fabulous chefs Kim Wojak, Alice Ireland, and Wayne Juhnke, over $10,000 was raised to support scholarships. So while this […]

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Building a Sustainable Future for OPEF Robotics

  Over the years the VEX Robotics program has continued to grow, helping Oak Park middle school students gain valuable problem solving, communication, and engineering skills. Our program became a model for middle schools statewide because OPEF invested in cutting-edge technology and top-notch coaching, and we are committed to enhancing our program quality for the […]

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Julian speaking

‘A great legacy for the students at this school to uphold’

The following is a transcription of the remarks Faith Julian made at the dedication ceremony for the BASE Camp mural in honor of her father, Dr. Percy Julian. A video of her speech is below. I’m so happy to be here. You have no idea. I spent four months in the hospital and rehab. My […]

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Ozobots & Architecture at Holmes STEM Night

Last week we were thrilled to be asked to stop by Holmes’ STEM night. It gave us a chance to visit the amazing replicas of Chicago buildings created by Holmes students in Architecture Adventure. We also got to see all the creative ways students found to play with the Ozobots! Thanks to Holmes for hosting […]

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Turn Your Trash into BASE Camp Treasure!

Yarn, cardboard boxes, two-liter bottles, toy cars … whatever you’ve got lying around your house, we can use for BASE Camp. Our staff and campers will take your trash and turn it into exciting STEAM education projects! Contact Amy Struckmeyer to arrange for pick up. Complete list: Visit our BASE Camp pages  to learn how […]

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