During the MBUSD Makerspace Launch Challenge #3, students explored biomedical engineering focusing on the question, “How do engineers help animals?”. Each 2nd-5th grade classroom worked in teams to design a trunk for a juvenile African elephant.
Inspired by the book Violet the Pilot, students will test and compare three different flying machines and then build a flying machine.
After hearing about the fictional Captain Arsenio (Captain Arsenio: Inventions and (Mis)adventures in Flight), students will build and redesign a model hovercraft given certain criteria and constraints.
Greetings PK Parents,
Have you heard about the AMAZING Dragon Innovation Den here on PK campus?
If you haven’t … the Dragon Innovation Den (a.k.a. Makerspace) is an innovative place that presents hands-on, creative ways to encourage students to design, experiment, build and invent as they deeply engage in science, engineering and tinkering.
For the 2016-2017 school year, all K-5th grade classrooms will have several opportunities to visit the Dragon Innovation Den for both Project Lead the Way (PLTW) and Dragon Innovation Den Challenge activities.
Kinder - 3rd Grade students will visit the Den on scheduled Fridays to engage in a PLTW Module facilitated by Susan Holton.
2nd - 5th Grade students will also participate and engage in four Dragon Innovation Den challenges* over the course of the school year. Each Den challenge will launch during a 45-minute classroom session lead by the 21st Century Teaching and Learning TOSA, Gretchen Gabreski. The purpose of the launch classroom activity is to expose students to STEM disciplines and strategies where students engage in solving engineering challenges using the engineering design process.
After each Dragon Innovation Den classroom launch activity, students can then voluntarily visit the Dragon Innovation Den (on their classroom designated lunch-recess time and day) for the following three weeks to continue to reiterate their challenge design.
While in the Den, students will use provided resources under the watchful eye of gracious parent volunteers.
Please sign up here if you are a parent or guardian willing and available to facilitate the Magnificent Things Solve Problems Challenge during any of the open Den times
PK Dragon Innovation Den Challenge Schedule
* Engage & Explore Week takes place in the classrooms
Reiterate Weeks - Open Dragon Innovation Den - Tues. - Wed. - Thurs. 11:15 - 12:30pm
Challenges: All Challenges are aligned with CCSS and NGSS
●Challenge 1: Design Dilemmas
○1st - 2nd Grades - Magnificent Things Solve Problems - Students will keep marbles from falling out of a toy vehicle that must go up a ramp and then down the ramp.
■The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires
●The young girl in the story demonstrates that making the perfect thing can be challenging. Although the reader does not know what the perfect thing is until the end of the book, the girl demonstrates the trial, error, perseverance, and adaptation aspects of the design process.
○3rd - 5th Grades - Makerspace Amazing Race - Design a boat that will carry you and your teammates (a total of four marbles) across the channel in the fastest amount of time. The boat must float. Only the materials provided can be used to construct the boat.
○Papa’s Mechanical Fish by Candace Fleming
●This is a fictional story based on true events and highlights the life of inventor Lodner Phillips. Papa (the story is told from the perspective of his daughter) tinkers and tries to develop a variety of things but is rarely successful. Finally, he designs a mechanical fish a submarine that takes friends and family beneath Lake Michigan
Surely, you heard the exciting news surrounding the PK Dragon Innovation Den (D.I.D.) Launch which took place the week of October 26th. During this launch week, every PK student was reintroduced to the Den, examined the purpose of a Makerspace and had the opportunity to participate in a paper challenge.
Now, with the revamped Den and inspired students eager to continue to innovate, its time for our next challenge – Balance Magic.
The plan for the Balance Magic Challenge is to first, show all students a 4 minute video the week of November 30th to introduce the concept. Then, open the Den from December 7-17. During assigned grade level recess times, students will have the opportunity to attempt the challenge on a voluntary basis. While in the Den, students will use provided resources under the watchful eye of gracious parent volunteers.
There is EXCITING news to share!
Pending the delivery of supplies, the PK Makerspace is planning to launch the week of February 23rd – March 18th.
EVERY PK student will participate in a Maker project by creating a Bristle Bot. Susan Holton has graciously agreed to facilitate (with the assistance of parent volunteers) an introductory lesson during Science Lab for 1st –5th Grades. Kindergarteners will participate in the Makerspace project in their individual classrooms. During this introductory session, the Makerspace design process will be presented to students which integrates the idea of productive struggle. Ideally, Makerspace helps students embrace struggle as part of the learning process, (i.e., letting students know that it’s OK not to know the answer all the while focusing on the discovery process).
After the introductory session, students will have the opportunity to retrieve their Bristle Bot /and/or continue to work on their design during “open lab”, which will take place during grade level lunch and recess times.
Therefore, the short-term goal is for all students to experience Makerspace and the long-term goal is to spark student interest/awareness of Makerspace.