"A Swisstastic Journey of Me and My Students"

Monday, January 23, 2017

Sixth Mazes coming along!

Image result for hexbug  Image result for sphero

So as part of the Hour of Code our 6th graders created mazes.  The challenge here is to:

1.)  Work in a group to design a maze in Google Drawing
2.)  Build that maze out of cardboard and craft sticks
3.)  Time a hexbug through your maze
4.)  Time a sphero that you are driving through your maze
5.)  Code the sphero to make it through your maze

6.)  Throughout the project we will record times of the hexbugs and spheros so our maze buddies at our partner school, Wilson, can compare their results.  

This project takes a long time when I only see the kids once a week so it will be interesting to reflect on it and see if the amount of time was worthwhile compared to the benefits of the project.  So far kids have been very engaged and excited about their work.

Here is a video of the kids performing trial runs on their mazes.  Listen to the problem solving discussion they are having while they are building.  This is they type of discussion teachers love to hear.  They are learning and having fun at the same time.  

Monday, January 9, 2017

2017 in Summit Media Center

So a NEW YEAR is here and we are starting our MAKERSPACES.  I love watching the students use their creative juices and discuss what their possibilities are with the makerspaces.  This year I am approaching this with a more planned strategy.  I have presented the 5th graders with six possibilities they are:
Image result for makey makey

Image result for littlebits
Finch Robots
Image result for finch robots
Green Screen
Image result for green screen
Image result for animation
3D Pen
Image result for 3d pen
Students spend one class watching videos of their choice on the various topics presented and then at the end of the class I have them sign up for whichever topic they would like to investigate further.  I strongly encourage them to not sign up for their first choice until they have explored at least two topics.  This has forced them to really think about their choice more than just diving in without any exploration.  In fact no one is allowed to sign up for any topic until the end of class when I give them the clue.  So far this approach seems to be working better than last year!