Pine Crest Head of Upper School Joseph (“Joey”) Walters ’95 wears many hats: he is an alumnus, the proud parent of two Panthers, Leah ’24 and Nathan ’31, an educator, and a member of the senior administration team.
Beloved mathematics instructor Richard Palmaccio ’08H taught at Pine Crest for 28 years. Now entering his 52nd year as a teacher, Mr. Palmaccio shows no signs of slowing down.
It has long been said that adversity does not change who we are — it reveals who we are. This year, our lives have been disrupted in countless ways by economic instability, social unrest and the COVID-19 global pandemic.
Longtime educator Joe Kelley has retired after 43 years of teaching, 22 of which he spent at Pine Crest School.
Pine Crest School Band Director, Dr. Dannel Espinoza, was invited by The Academy of Arts and Letters to New York City to record with his saxophone quartet Project Fusion.
Dr. Dannel Espinoza, or Dr. E. as he is known by many of his students, can be found on the Pine Crest School Boca Raton campus. Dr. Espinoza joined the Pine Crest Fine Arts Department as the Band Director during the 2018-19 school year.
Summer is right around the corner, and it is the perfect time for teachers’ reflection, professional growth, and the chance to dive into a good book. Inspired by Pine Crest School’s 2019-24 Strategic Plan, “The Future is Here,” this year’s faculty summer reading supports themes that are reflected in the overarching, guiding question:
Pine Crest School received three Anatomage Tables recently.
Anatomage Tables are virtual dissecting tables that are generally used by medical schools such as the Mayo Clinic to allow medical students the opportunity to perform virtual autopsies. One Table is located in an Upper School Huizenga Family Science Building classroom. The additional Tables are located in the Middle School life science classrooms — one on the Boca Raton campus and one on the Fort Lauderdale campus.
Today’s pre-primary aged students are presented with a variety of different tech tools, many of which we use at Pine Crest School.
Middle School at Pine Crest is home to new virtual reality (VR) equipment, which Pine Crest Computer Science and Technology faculty are using to teach students how to create their own virtual experiences and to influence others’ perspective.
“More content is being released and is increasingly available and accessible, and VR and augmented reality (AR) devices are becoming more effective,” said Mr. Sean Tibor, Pine Crest Computer Science and Technology Specialist. “By the time our Middle School students go to college, they will need to know how to use this equipment and feel comfortable using it.”
The terms “VR” and “AR” are often used interchangeably, but they are not the same.
“The difference is that AR takes information around you and fuses the world you are in with additional data or information — think Pokemon Go,” said Mr. Tibor. “VR is about immersion and perspective. It overlays virtual items or instances on top of the real world. The benefit of VR technology is that it can change our perspective from a few different axes: distance, time, scale, and the forthcoming, human perspective."
Delving into these axes, Mr. Tibor shared how using VR technology is not limited to one course or subject.
Project based learning (PBL) initiatives are some of the ways faculty are approaching hands-on learning with students. A PBL assignment engages students in solving a real-world problem or answering a complex question. Students then demonstrate their knowledge and skills by developing a public product or presentation for a real audience.
One of the many areas that The Pine Crest Fund supports is faculty excellence. All year long, faculty, administrators, and staff are able to take advantage of stimulating professional development activities — sometimes right on campus.
Before setting up classrooms and welcoming students for the first day of school in August, Pine Crest School faculty participated in the Teachers Teaching Teachers professional development day. Now in its sixth year, teachers participate in a variety of peer-led learning sessions where they connected with colleagues, exchanged expertise, and engaged in dialogue about best practices.