Do you remember building with blocks or creating something new? My second-grade students are inquisitive and creative and like to build. They love hands-on activities where they can explore and experiment. However, being in a transit and high poverty community, some have not had the opportunity to experience many science activities.
My students are budding scientists, engineers and architects!
They participate in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics) activities throughout the week with an exciting ending project on Friday.
My students love to create and build, but many do not have the growth mindset needed to make a structure, quickly giving up before finishing a difficult project. The picture books from this project will spear conversation about working as a team to help support each other. The pictures and illustrations in the book "Dreaming Up: A Celebration of Building" will expose the children to famous buildings around the world to help their imagination. But most importantly, the books "Iggy Peck, Architect" and "The Most Magnificent Thing" will inspire them to dream and then problem solve to meet their creative vision of a building and to persevere to complete their project.
To foster their creativity and imagination, the students need a variety of materials to build their own structure.
They will first use dominoes and see how easily one push could topple their whole building down and thus, the importance of a good foundation. The students will learn that they need to choose wisely which materials would be the best for their own project and how to best use those materials. Materials offered will include plastic cups, craft sticks, index cards, Lincoln Logs, foil, and masking tape. After building a structure, the students will explain how they created it and why they chose those particular materials. To be able to explain their thinking and problem solving is huge for many of the students, a skill that can empower children in all areas of learning.
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