Saturday, May 25, 2013

STEM Ideas

Using Google Hangouts these teachers in Oklahoma and Texas collaborating to share ideas and resources regarding their STEM projects.  Elementary students are building prosthetic legs and robots (BOT projects).  They talk about the enormity of delivering curriculum for 300-500 students.  They share cross curricular ideas. For example, they made burglar proof lunch boxes to go along with the book, "Dear Mr. Henshaw".  They use SCRATCH (Wes has created an after school SCRATCH club linked here at Independence Elementary School in Yukon, Oklahoma)  which incorporates problem solving, writing, mathematics, logic to enhance multiple concepts for deeper understanding.  And, they have used digital stories (iPad app BookCreator) to integrate language arts into STEM lessons.  They also use Lego WeDo Kits using motors and reactors.  This resource came from Wesley Fryer's website Moving at the Speed of Creativity.  Common to both schools is the use of technology. One school just got a huge grant from Google to purchase Google ChromeBooks and has branched out to using Google Apps for Education.  Both schools have iPads.  Wes mentions these iPad apps to create digital media such as ShowMe, EduCreations, and Explain Everything.  I have personally used all three.  They are quite easy.  

Implementing these ideas in the classroom are huge to meeting CCSS.  I recall the trip my students at Asher took to the Lego Workshop at OSU Okmulgee in Okmulgee, Oklahoma, November 3, 2009.  The students were SO engaged.  They constructed their Lego mobile as a team.  They problem solved as they discovered whether or not they had programmed their mobile correctly to run a prescribed path and route inclusive or right turns or left turns around a make-shift track. Feed back was instant. Motivation high.  I love sharing ideas I gather from others.  

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