Learning through interest (LTI)

  • Learning through interest (LTI) is the backbone of the Big Picture Learning educational philosophy at Innovations High School. Academic workshops are held Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, whereas Wednesdays are reserved for LTI experiences. Advisors guide scholars through the LTI process.

    Step 1: Identifying interests and passions - Scholars participate in interest exploration activities that include reflections on their strengths, weaknesses, goals, and career interests.

    Step 2: Informational interview - Scholar seeks out adults in the community who share similar interests. They arrange an informational interview (20-30 minutes) to gain a deeper understanding of a professional, career path, and nuances of the daily work environment. Scholars are expected to be at Innovations for the remainder of the school day. Scholars will complete a reflection after the informational interview. 

    Step 3: Shadow day - After conducting informational interviews, scholars identify organizations and companies they would like to learn more about. Scholars spend a day shadowing professionals to learn more about the daily flow of their occupation. This is an opportunity for a potential internship mentor and scholar to interact. Assuming the shadow day lasts 5 hours, the scholar is not expected to be at Innovations that day. Instead the scholar will check in via ImBlaze. Scholars will complete a reflection after the shadow day. Shadow days do not necessarily lead to internships as either the scholar or professional may not be able/willing to carry on a full internship.

    Step 4: Internship - A successful shadow day may lead to an internship. When scholars are interested in a mentor and workplace, and vice versa, advisors arrange an internship setup meeting. Together, the advisor, scholar, and potential mentor design the internship, and connect the internship to academics and project development. Internships last 4-10 weeks, every Wednesday, and are unpaid. Assuming the internship day lasts 5 hours, the scholar is not expected to be at Innovations on Wednesdays, instead the scholar will check in and out via ImBlaze. Scholars will complete a reflection after each internship day.

    We observe holidays and breaks according to the WCSD balanced calendar, and scholars will not have LTI experiences during the first and last week of each trimester.

Scholar requirements

  • Scholars will use ImBlaze to complete all steps of the LTI process. All LTI plans will be communicated with the advisor.

    All scholars leaving Innovations High School will need a permission slip signed by their advisor, parent/guardian, and administrator, submitted the Tuesday before the LTI experience at the latest.

    Scholars going on shadow days and internships will obtain WCSD insurance coverage to protect our community businesses and organizations.


  • We expect that scholars complete 4 leaving to learn experiences during their first trimester at Innovations High School.

    We expect that veteran scholars have a minimum of 9 LTI experiences per trimester. If they do not yet have an internship, we expect that they are actively working toward obtaining one.

    Scholars will demonstrate professionalism in their appearance, communication, planning, and attitude.

  • Scholar permission slip

  • Innovations van

    Innovations scholars leave to learn through interest thanks to the very generous donation of a van by the William N. Pennington Foundation