Walton Education Foundation

My intention is to provide my students with the opportunity to collaborate with a lab partner to problem solve and engineer a creative structure in response to a first grade science standard using a STEAM kit (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math), similar to Maker Space but more scientifically based and project-oriented.

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Multiple STEAM kits for First Grade Science lab/classroom

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School:
West Defuniak Elementary 
Subject:
STEM Education 
Teacher:
Julie Perk 
Students Impacted:
  
Grade:
Date:
October 13, 2016

Investor

Thank you to the following investor for funding this grant.

 

CHELCO - $997.50

 

Impact to My Classroom

# of Students Impacted: 20

     The STEAM kits provided my students the opportunity to work hands-on using problem solving, artistic creativity, analytical skills, and engineering to create a variety of functioning structures. Collaboration was essential during these activities as the students had a lab partner to work with. Problem solving in a positive productive manner while in the process of engineering the structures was the first task the students encountered. The rubric provided measurable data to prove the students improved in constructing the structures, in exploring the functions of each structure, and in presenting the findings from the explorations. 

     The kits were presented in order of increasing construction complexity. Initially, the students required complete assistance and teacher-led step-by-step directions with visual aides. By the end of the year, after completing 5 of the kit activities, the students were comfortable and capable of reading the direction booklet and following the printed steps with their lab partner.  

     The explorations also improved as the experience progressed. In the first activity with the spinners, I instructed them to attempt to manipulate the spinner in a specific manner. Then I prompted questions to create discussions on the results. The last exploration was open ended and the students were presenting their findings in front of the class with each partnership offering different results of the exploration.

     The scoring rubric had 5 sections measuring:understanding of science concept/standard, collaboration, problem solving, creativity, and presentation. The rubric score average for the first kit activity was 53% (8/15). The average score for the last kit activity was 93% (14/15). The largest growth was in the problem solving and presentation sections.

     I was able to retain the integrity of each kit so they can be used multiple times. This allows future classes to benefit from the products purchase with this grant. I discovered that the kits provided extension activities that I plan to offer with next year’s class.  

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spinner kit

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pinball kit

 

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nature kit

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water wheel kit

 

Original Grant Overview

Goal

My intention is to provide my students with the opportunity to collaborate with a lab partner to problem solve and engineer a creative structure in response to a first grade science standard using a STEAM kit (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math), similar to Maker Space but more scientifically based and project-oriented. 

 

What will be done with my students

Each month my classroom will be transformed into a science laboratory where students will become scientists, artists, and engineers. Students will work with a teacher selected lab partner to insure beneficial collaboration among students. These STEAM kits will provide my students the opportunity to work hands-on using problem solving, artistic creativity, analytical skills, and engineering to create a variety of structures such as a mechanical device or sculpture. The students will be taught a lesson based on a first grade science standard. Using the prepared STEAM kit, the students will engage in discussion and problem solving to create the planned structure. Each lab partnership will prepare a presentation of their ideas and creation to the class. The students will be evaluated using a rubric to determine effectiveness and promote accountability. Components of the rubric will be: understanding of science concept/standard, collaboration, problem solving, creativity, and presentation.  

 

Benefits to my students

Giving my students the tools to succeed in a rapidly growing technology-based world is the key to ensuring their success. The famous artist, Leonardo Da Vinci, has the reputation of demonstrating the best combination of engineer AND artist. Using art as a tool in a STEM activity fosters flexible thinking and a risk-taking element that speaks to young children. Working on a hands-on engaging project will bring science to life for my 20 first grade students. Collaboration is a life skill that will be learned while working in a positive manner with a partner to complete a set of tasks. Students will present their thoughts and ideas to an audience thereby gaining practice in public speaking. It is proven that deeper/long-lasting retention of concepts are gained through teaching (or presenting) knowledge to others.  

 

Budget Narrative

My 20 students would work with a lab partner requiring 10 kits. The kits are $19.95 each. The grant would provide 5 months or 5 lessons.
$19.95 x 10 partners = $199.5 x 5 month/options = $997.50  

 

Items

# Item Cost
1 5 months of Kiwi Crates for 20 students $997.50
  Total: $997.50

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Special Thanks to Our Presenting Partners

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