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Different levels of understanding | Posted in Elementary Science

One thing I have done is leveled puzzles...not hand outs but actual puzzles. If a student finishes their work, they can go to a side table and work on a puzzle of their choice. I started with simple puzzles but over the course of the year, I increased their difficulty. I used jigsaw puzzles or tangrams...I found one kind of puzzle where all the pieces were square with four different pictures on each side and the pieces fit together in only one way--these were extremely challenging and students took many days/weeks to complete (sorry I don't remember what they were called). Puzzles are quiet, independent activities. With only five students, they could collaborate on more difficult puzzles. If they are old enough, you could have them design a puzzle for their peers and let them actually print/cut the puzzle to give to the other students. Great way to engage them in  and teach about the design process.

Lisa Mitchell

Implementing STEM in my classroom | Posted in STEM

Hello Leslie! I'm also currently working with kindergarteners for my student teaching. I think that one easy way to implement STEM in a classroom would be to start off small by using the kind of language you would hear in a science classroom. Using vocabulary such as "experiment, predict, and observation" are just small ways you could implement STEM. Additionally, you could think about the kinds of lessons that you are presenting to your students. You could think about which of your lessons could be presented as a problem or a question that students can explore. By doing this, your curious, little learners can think about problem solving and research.

Krystal Kennedy

STEM and Fairy Tales | Posted in STEM

Wendy, I absolutely loved the article. I think as educators, we often forget that kids can use their imagination in science as well! Imagination is not only for the art or music room. I think it is wonderful that there is a way to let their creativity shine through an amazing subject. As a student teacher, I do notice that sometimes we (educators) get so caught up in teaching them right from wrong that we forget that they have an imagination and creative juices that need to flow every once in a while! A question I am pondering is; how often would you recommend using this in the classroom? Would this count as a warm-up or hook activity before the lesson? Or a fun Friday type play? I would love to incorporate this into my future classroom as a STEM activity. Best, Megan Bradburn

Megan Bradburn

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