Mr. Sabatier Helps students with calculations in his physics class.

Teachers of Oxford High School are taking a hands on approach in closing the achievement gap between high performance and low performing students.

The hands on approach in Oxford High School’s physics classes are helping bridge the learning gap for Oxford High School students.

Funding from the Oxford School District Foundation, which pays for innovative teaching ideas, made the new approach a reality.

Duncan Gray is the Assistant Principal at Oxford High School. He says it’s critical that schools begin think differently about how they approach education.

“If it’s hand on, if it’s innovative, and if they can see the relevance of what they’re doing to the world outside, they are going to become engaged,” Gray said. “It requires teachers to change their model, to change their approach.”

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Students test their calculations in Mr. Sabatier’s physics class.

According to Gray, the new physical engagement with the learning environment also strengthens the relationship between teachers and students.

Charley Sabatier is a Physics teacher at Oxford High School. He makes opportunities for students not to just learn physics, but to do it as well.

“The grant has supported us and allowed us to do physical quantitative measurements with new equipment,” Sabatier said. “The kids really like learning how to use the technology and how to use it to help their understanding of the topics we’re studying.”

Though teachers have altered lesson plans to new teach styles, many students have altered their traditional comprehension skills.

Evelyn Smith is a student at Oxford High School, and she says it’s a positive change from just pencil and paper.

“I’m traditionally a note taker and color coded type of person, but I’ve  actually really enjoyed how much hands on time we get and how involved we are,” Smith said. “It’s not just us reading about it, we’re the ones who are actually doing the work.”

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