Family Resources to Encourage Female Student Engineering

In case you haven’t had a chance to check out the Family Resources page, we want to highlight what you will find there. We ‘ve added some new Resources! Our goal is to empower girls and to inform you about some of high-quality resources we recommend.

Goldie Blox is a company that makes engineering toys for girls. They have a very positive message that gets girls excited about and engaged in engineering. They will have a float in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. GoldieBlox also has videos available that walk you through building the toys.

Roominate is a website is another engineering toy for girls that has a lot of resources available to support with building their tools. They have a lot of videos available to help parents support their daughters’ building

Other resources:

Curiosity Machine is a website takes you through the steps of the Engineering Process to help you complete an engineering challenge with your child.

TinyBop has a variety of apps for your phone or tablet you can use with your kids.

Our school has parternered with KinderLab Robotics. Students in K2 and 1st grade will be learning how to program Kibo Robots.

Plum Landing is a website that was created by WGBH to promote STEM Learning.

Students will be using Bee Bots in Science to start learning about computer programming and developing literacy skills.

Exploring Physical Science and Engineering Through Balls and Ramps

Kindergarten and First Grade Students have been exploring with Marble Ramps for a few weeks. This was an opportunity for them to work collaboratively, listen and share ideas, practice taking turns, come up with and enact a shared (group) plan, test out their plan and make adjustments.

Students have been practicing using science vocabulary words: force, stable, unstable, push, and speed. One of the engineering challenges as to see how balls of different materials move. For example, does the ping pong ball go faster or slower than plastic ball? We used glass marbles, Styrofoam balls of different sizes, rubber balls, tennis balls and ping pong balls. Students came up with the ideas of using chairs and buckets to explore angles. Some of the students challenged themselves to have a ball go down a ramp and hit a target or end up in a bucket. Students were very engaged in and excited about their discoveries and didn’t want to leave science class.

This is a totally student-driven idea. The students asked for an opportunity to build their own ramps. We didn’t have enough plastic tubes for everyone, so I gathered materials from the storage closet for students to be able to explore their passions and interests.

 

This Week in Kindersteam

In our unit, K2 students are comparing and contrasting land snails and water snails.
Students are comparing the pictures of land snails from the Science Big Books with the water snails we have in our science centers.
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After the big book reading, Steven is in one of the centers identifying parts of the snail – such as tentacle, foot, mouth, and spiral shell.

This week, First Grade students  read non-fiction texts about the life cycles of pumpkins, gourds and corn. Students are conducted observations using science tools: magnifying glasses, pencils and books. After making observations, students created and labeled drawings. Building a strong science vocabulary is an essential part of developing language and early reading skills.

 

Students followed the Engineering Design Process to create a stable marble ramp. First they came up with ideas. Next, they created a plan. They built the ramp and then they tested it several times and kept making improvements. The ramp wasn’t stable and kept breaking, but after a lot of hard work, they figured out what they needed to do to make the ramp’s structure stable. They were excited and gave each other high-fives to celebrate.