My students need Magnetic Blocks, Engino Discovering STEM structures, Mattel Bloxels, Boggle, Rory's Story Cubes, iTrax Critical Thinking Game for critical thinking activities that engage their minds and get them excited about exploring and challenging the world around them!
How fast has technology changed in the past five years? Ten years? Thirty years? Just thinking about the monumental innovations that have been placed into our hands over the past thirty years is unbelievable. The current generation has finally received its own name, Generation Z. It follows children from the mid-90s to present day. This generation has also been dubbed the “iGeneration” after the technological increases with Apple products, such as the iPhone. My class of fifth grade students are what I will term “millennial innovators”. These children have grown up in a society where technology is born into their hands. Even in my rural school district, there is a need for tapping into this generation's innovation to produce competitive members of society. This generation of students seek change! Our society is evolving by the second, and we have to keep up for the sake of the children we serve.
How do we continue to grow and challenge minds that live in a society where new breakthroughs occur in the blink of an eye? The answer is simple...you make space for it. That is exactly what I am doing in my classroom this year. In just a few short weeks, I have seen more and more students excited to come to class for what I call “Endeavor Hour”.
What is “Endeavor Hour?” “Endeavor Hour” is a time set aside during the morning where students participate in activities that engage their minds.
These are meaningful tasks that increase students’ critical thinking skills, strategies, and make space for creative awareness.
The purpose of this grant is to secure more materials to enhance this beloved time period in my classroom. I want students to enter the classroom knowing that there is space for them to explore the world and its challenges head on. Items we would love to have include: STEM Bin materials for constructing (Magnetic Blocks, Engino Discovering STEM structures, Mattel Bloxels), a chess board, and critical thinking games (Boggle, Rory's Story Cubes, iTrax Critical Thinking Game). Each of these items will be used to increase student oral and written communication. Students will first process through the information with a friend, and then turn their process into a written composition. This may be in the form of a story, How-to writing Students will write about their process when constructing these STEM activities.
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