Project Based Learning

At Atrium Studio, our students enjoy a project-based approach to learning. This prepares them, throughout their time with us, to apply their knowledge, understanding and practical experience to a range of situations that they are likely to encounter in the wider world.

Our experienced, enthusiastic teaching staff work closely with established industry partners (our Industry Education Steering Group) to offer students an inspiring curriculum. The diagram below shows how we do this:



Year 9 Autumn Term

Driving Question:

How can the natural world influence the modern world?


Students will consolidate their learning from different elements of the curriculum by creating models of Eco Classrooms.

End product(s):

Individual teams’ Eco Classrooms will be combined to form a scale model of a school building. This will be exhibited at Atrium’s next Parents’ Evening, as well as for governors, industry professionals and members of the local community. Students will be prepared to talk formally about their project to a variety of audiences.

Subject Leader Input:

Maths: Scale, plans and elevations, powers of 10, tessellation

Science: Biomimicry

DEC!: Surveys, room schedules, quantity surveying, 3D concept modelling

Trip: The Eden Project, Cornwall


Year 10 Spring Term


Driving Question:

How can a butterfly stop a building?


Students research ecology in a proposed site location by using various methods to capture, record and present information.

End product(s):

Produce an ecology summary report for local site location (DEC2 site).

Subject Leader Input:

English: Formatting ecology study

Maths: Topography, impossible drawings

Science: Species variation, quadrats

DEC!: Ecology and site impact


Atrium students have the opportunity to pursue a CREST Award as part of their supported PBL. Last year, the following students 
succeeded at Regional and National levels:
Will and Jaye: Enterprising Young Devon Award 2016
Louise: Young Scientist 2016 (National Finalist)


Some of our exciting projects have included:

Non-newtonian substances meet cycle safety; pine wood Derby Cars; Nuclear fusion – build your own Hadron Collider; the design and manufacture of double bale spikes; bioplastics and their uses; animal- inspired houses; exploring hovercraft; future sustainable commercial air travel; remote-controlled boats; solar phone chargers; sustainable acoustic speakers… and many more!

Congratulations to all our students – we are proud of the way you work together to produce such original and creative projects.