This year faculty have been discussing innovation and what it looks like in their classroom. This was a theme that surfaced again and again at the Learning and the Brain Conference that the third grade team attended last year. “For me, innovation isn’t just adding new activities or projects, says Mrs. Gilpin, a Third Grade Teacher. “It means taking a deeper look at what I’ve been doing over the years and thinking of ways to enhance those experiences to help students build the skills they will need in the future.”
“It means taking a deeper look at what I’ve been doing over the years and thinking of ways to enhance those experiences to help students build the skills they will need in the future.”
~Mrs. Gilpin, Third Grade Teacher
Each year Mrs. Gilpin’s class conducts a massive research project at the end of the school year. This year the class will be exploring the Titanic Museum Project. “It’s a project we completed five years ago, so this year I want to enhance the experience. I want the students to create an interactive display using technology. I know that in order for this to happen, my students need more experience with coding.”
Building on the experience with Hour of Code in December with Mrs. Miller, the Educational Technology Teacher, the teachers decided to include coding in our summarization unit. “Each year students complete a study on Cinderella stories from around the world,” continued Mrs. Gilpin. “During this study they are working on their summarizing skills by focusing on four parts; characters, settings, problems and solutions.”
In the past, students created posters to retell their story to the class. “This year, they are in the Makerspace using the makey makey and coding to create an interactive experience for their retelling. Using Scratch and connecting their Chromebooks to the Makey Makey, the students have coded their story to retell when you press a button on the poster board!”
Interested in learning more about the third grade bridge building project from last year? Click on the image to the right and explore the importance of professional development as our teachers talk about enhancing projects with ideas they brought back from the Learning and the Brain Conference at Harvard University.
Learning & the Brain® Conference: Engaged, Empowered Minds: Using Brain Science to Educate Ethical 21st Century Citizens & Problem Solvers