Month: May 2015

Constructionism through Design Thinking Projects

Design Thinking as Constructionist Learning, Lessons from a Spring Hard Problem In the second semester of Problem based Science, my 5th graders are introduced to their “Spring hard problem.” The spring hard problem marks the end of our patterns unit and the beginning of our study of structures and systems through the lens of making… Read more »

What does making in the classroom look like?

The 2014/2015 FabLearn Fellows cohort is a diverse group of 18 educators and makers. They represent eight states and five countries, and work with a wide range of ages at schools, museums, universities and non-profits. Throughout the course of the year, they will develop curriculum and resources, as well as contribute to current research projects. Their… Read more »

Telegraph Project in History

I posted a while ago about the line between instructions and letting students figure it all out, and I said I would report back after I taught the telegraph lesson. I started with a design meeting with our lab director and our tinkerer in residence (yes, I know, it is so cool that I work… Read more »

Making and National History Day

In some ways, National History Day (NHD) is rather “old school,” a science fair style research competition for history. I started requiring my students to participate in NHD because I saw the potential for deep research and thought, a good match with our department history “habits of mind” and a great opportunity for students to… Read more »

Making Stuff Light Up and Move!

My sixth and seventh grade STEAM students immersed themselves in the wonder of electricity this school year. They started out by exploring basic circuits, using blocks that I constructed using the Exploratorium’s ideas from their electricity exploration curriculum.   The overall learning targets for this unit were: Students will learn how to handle and connect components… Read more »