Elementary students at Columbus Signature Academy — Lincoln campus are answering questions and spreading knowledge through hands-on projects.

The school utilizes project-based learning (PBL), and the fourth- and sixth-grade students received a guiding question to provide direction. That helped them create two hands-on projects to share information with the community.

Fourth-grade students were given the question, “How can we inform others of famous Hoosiers and their impact on Indiana History?”

To kick off the social studies project, Pete Law from the Actors Studio of Hope introduced the students to acting, said Hannah Moore, fourth-grade teacher at CSA — Lincoln.

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Students then voted to create a living wax museum of their chosen famous Hoosiers as their final project, said Shawna Netser, PBL project manager.

The fourth-graders had the opportunity to meet — both virtually and in person — with several living famous Hoosiers, such as Katie Stam, Miss America 2009; John David Anderson, American children’s author; Rupert Boneham, four-time “Survivor” reality star and philanthropist.

The public is welcome to come see their work on display from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. today at The Commons, 300 Washington St., Columbus.

Students in CSA-Lincoln’s fifth grade were asked to design a prosthetic prototype to replace a human body function while keeping the cost down, according to Netser.

To prepare the students took their time researching and learning all about prosthetics.

Nicolas Brewer from Kenney Orthotics in Seymour came to the school and explained everything from the history of prosthetics to what materials he uses and common patient complaints, Netser said. Brewer who is certified in both prosthetics and orthotics.

Students were given a budget and imaginary patient and designed a prototype of their prosthetic. A group of students will present their prototype at the school board meeting at 7 p.m. today in the CSA _ Lincoln gymnasium.

Sixth-grade students were asked, “How can we use authentic experiences to learn and teach others about medieval Europe?”

After studying their textbooks and learning from members of the Shire of Cuil Cholium, the local Society for Creative Anachronism group, students decided to create their own medieval fair to teach others about ancient and medieval Europe, Netser said.

“This group sent representatives to our class over the course of several weeks to teach our students about topics such as the Crusades, the Black Death and heraldry. They then came in and did a demonstration for our students, showing us how they battle and conducted heraldry contests,” sixth-grade teacher Stephen Shipley said.

The project was student-driven and was designed to utilize visuals and re-enactments to teach others about the time period, Shipley said.

To make the fair a complete experience, students have been responsible for costumes, props and displays. They selected era-appropriate occupations, such as blacksmiths and knights, and events such as the Crusades and Black Death, Netser said.

The fair was conducted April 5 in the school gymnasium.

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Kaitlyn Evener is an editorial assistant for The Republic. She can be reached at kevener@therepublic.com or 812-379-5633.