Sky Gazing and Solving Real Problems

Our Heads In The Clouds

For the past few class sessions, the Grade 1 class have been reading children’s books on clouds for our current Weather Unit. Some of the titles include “The Cloud Book” by Tomie DePaola and . The students then turned their heads towards the clouds and documented their observations. Here are their write-ups:

Our previous lesson was on tornadoes and other weather storms. The final lesson will be on air.


The Silver Lining

Outside of my science center in the Grade 1 classrooms, students are coming up with a problem and using the Engineering Design Process to come up with solutions. They created blueprints, or “pinkprints” of their solutions and wrote down their solutions to practice their literacy skills. These classes are inclusionary and contain students with special needs and English language learners.  The Grade 1 teachers have told me that because of the treehouse projects done earlier this year, the students have acquired a conceptual knowledge of problem solving through the Engineering Design Process. How about that!

Here are the first drafts of student work. I interviewed a student, Gianna, to get her insights on what the many problems are that she identified and the solution that they’ve created to address it.

“Here’s my problem and solution. As you can see, Ms. Alicia, I had a lot of problems and solutions! My favorite is my invention for birds who poop on my car. I also like my invention for when kids get hit on the playgroun by accident. The first white paper (above) was my brainstorm of invention ideas; the second paper is one of my illustrations, and the ‘Pink Print’ is my blueprint.”

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