With a $500,000 grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Pittsburgh’s many youth-serving organizations, school districts, mentors and educators are coming together in a coordinated way to create a seamless set of learning opportunities across the city for kids and teens.

Teens are returning to libraries to use new digital media tools in The Labs @ CLP , learning webmaking, and media literacy at Pittsburgh Hack Jam. At Makeshop, kids and adults are making things together. The Oglebay Institute is creating arts-based science education that integrates left and right-brain thinking. The Pittsburgh Youth Media is turning aspiring storytellers into cub reporters, while at Hip Hop on L.O.C.K., teens are taking a spin at music making while also developing leadership skills. And under the Hive, all these efforts will be connected and integrated so tweens and teens can use the city as a big game board for learning.

Hive Learning Networks advance the principles of Connected Learning, a framework for linking young people’s academic achievement, peer social networks, and personal interests so that they can learn “anytime, anywhere.”

The support of the MacArthur Foundation will enable Pittsburgh to develop a model for learning that expands the boundaries of learning beyond the single institution of the school and incorporates other important community institutions like museums, libraries, afterschool programs, and community centers. The first Hive was launched in New York City in 2007, followed by Chicago in 2009.

“The Pittsburgh region is a leader in rethinking learning to prepare young people for the challenges and opportunities of the digital era, and just the right location for the third Hive Learning Network.” said Connie Yowell, Director of Education at the MacArthur Foundation.

“We have long-standing relationships with some of Pittsburgh’s most renowned institutions, but our investment in the Sprout Fund represents a much broader partnership with the many organizations working together on a new vision for learning.”

The Sprout Fund, a Pittsburgh-based nonprofit organization, will administer the Hive Learning Network and make grants to spur new connected learning projects and programs for tweens, teens, and young adults in the greater Pittsburgh region.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for our region,” said Cathy Lewis Long, Executive Director of The Sprout Fund. “Launching a Hive Learning Network in Pittsburgh will help us provide even more remarkable learning experiences for youth in our region.”