My students are voracious readers with a thirst for knowledge. As the librarian, I'm peppered with questions about the environment, cybernetics, what exactly a mechanical engineer does, and so on, on a daily basis. I'm sometimes in wonder about the things my students know. It's truly astounding. A lot of my students have overcome personal struggles in their quest.
I'm often in awe of my students' independent drive for discovery and knowledge.
We have a large population of ESL learners (English as a second language). They work very hard to overcome that language barrier and achieve academic excellence. I can see the proud admiration their parents have for them when we have awards ceremonies, or when they graduate and move onto middle school. It's inspiring to see their journey.
The parents are also a large part of our school culture. We are situated in a valley with a large population, but our school feels like it's a small town school. Everyone is very close and there's a good support structure for the families all helping each other out. I'm very proud of our students and our school. I'm so happy to be a part of this wonderful school.
We've all read a fairy tale or two. Little Red Riding Hood, The Three Little Pigs, or maybe The Three Billy Goats Gruff. Every person knows these fairy tales. At my school, for example, we devote a month to these American standards that are read throughout our school systems. Every child is asked about the moral of the story, but I took away something different from these tales.
Can you teach STEAM skills through a fairy tale?
This is the thought I had while reading these stories to the students. If The Three Billy Goats Gruff have to cross the bridge with the troll under it, how is that bridge made? Will it hold the goats up? Is it big enough for a troll to live under? If the prince has to climb up Rapunzels' tower, how does he do it? Does he build a ladder? Weave a rope? Will it be sturdy enough to hold up to him climbing up the tower? How high is the window in the tower?
All these questions can be answered through real life experimentation and building. This is important for students to experience for reference and discovery. Some might find that they love engineering through this. Perhaps others might reference back to this moment when explaining math to their own children or students. This is how you demonstrate to the students that there are real world applications for these ideas and formulas. Practical application to show the students how much fun it math and engineering can be.
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