New to the site? Try Quick User Guide

We use technology from the Learning Commons to track anonymous visitor behavior on our website to ensure you have a great experience. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Opt In/Out.

COVID-19 Quick View: Remote Learning Guidance & Resources

Senior Portfolios

Culminating projects that seniors design, work through, and present to demonstrate high levels of learning self-management

Context

Bronx Arena requires that students complete senior portfolios as their culminating projects before graduation. Student autonomy is foundational to their instructional approach, and students gradually build their autonomy throughout their time at Bronx Arena. Challenges and capstones are projects that play a large part in this scaffolded approach, as challenges are harder and more complex than daily instructional learning activities, and capstones are even more involved. Senior portfolios are the “capstone of capstones,” and the most challenging projects that require the largest amount of student ownership.

Senior portfolios require students to design and build a project on their own, applying the concepts of Bronx Arena’s instructional model (challenges and capstones) to a completely new topic. Students are able to pick any topic that interests them. For example, a student who enjoyed skateboarding and had an interest in physics chose to create a video breaking down the physics of skateboarding tricks. The senior portfolio project involves designing the course (including identification of the competencies addressed), creating rubrics, and the formation of the curriculum. Teachers can provide support as needed for the instructional components of the course, but since the topics are so diverse, students must also find a mentor (from within or outside of school) that can support them in topic-specific areas of the project. After designing the course, students must complete the work (research, analysis, etc.) and craft a presentation, demonstrating a high degree of ownership over their learning.

Senior portfolios are designed with college in mind. If students can complete a senior portfolio, they should have the skills and agency needed to be successful in college courses.

Student Does

  • Determines the topic for their senior portfolio.
  • Designs a course that they need to complete to master the topic selected.
  • Completes the coursework they designed.
  • Presents on their topic to students and teachers.

Teacher Does

  • Supports students by acting as, or helping them find, a mentor for their senior portfolio.
  • Grades students on their presentation.

Technology Does

  • Houses documents that provide structure for students to design and complete their work and present on their projects.
  • Provides access to unique resources outside of school.

Strategy Resources


Bronx Arena Senior Portfolio Rubric Example

This is a sample student-made rubric for a senior portfolio at Bronx Arena. Learn More

Bronx Arena Challenge Example: Computer Science

This is a sample student-made rubric for a challenge on computer science at Bronx Arena. Learn More

Bronx Arena Challenge Example: Storytelling 101

This is a sample student-made rubric for a challenge on storytelling at Bronx Arena. Learn More

Bronx Arena Challenge Example: The Wire

This is a sample student-made rubric for a challenge on a film at Bronx Arena. Learn More

Bronx Arena Challenge Example: Ecology

This is a sample student-made rubric for a challenge on ecology at Bronx Arena.b Learn More

Bronx Arena Competency Rubrics

Bronx Arena created competencies for literacy, thinking, and expression, with accompanying rubrics to assess mastery. Learn More

Bronx Arena Competencies at a Glance

Bronx Arena created competencies for literacy, thinking, and expression. Learn More

Time for students to explore their passions

This strategy, created by Unlocking Time, captures how schools create time for students to explore... Learn More

Website Preview