I chose the book 'The Antlered Ship' for the ignitor for this weeks Senior Year 5/6 sessions. I found this book recently in a little Indie style bookshop in the USA, it has a beautifully textured and illustrated dust jacket. The book focuses on Marco the Foxes 'wonderings' and his journey in an attempt to have his questions answered and to ultimately find friendship. It's a beautiful story with a very powerful message. I just searched and found the book on Amazon and it's on sale......even with the conversion rate its much cheaper than I paid!
The team wide inquiry for this term is 'Mountain to Sea' and they are nurturing 'Curiosity' as their focus 'attitude'.
I set up 6 Challenge Stations, each with a focus on 'wondering' and students were asked to record their initial wonderings either using their iPad (in Notes or recording using 'Camera' or an app of their choice), they would reflect on these wonderings later in class.
1. Flinking & Sphero
Will something float...will it sink......or will it 'flick' - which is something in between!
I provided a laminated challenge card with instructions and provided a raft of 'random items' to be tested in both normal and salt water so learners could wonder and hypothesise about the outcome. Learners recorded the process using iPad. Then we introduced a Sphero, would it float or sink? The challenge was then to created a 'body' for the Sphero to make it both sink and then travel when driven under water.
2. LEGO Station
Learners had the choice to either complete a Robotic Lego creation (eg Boost, EV3 or WEDO) or they could create their own creation and add a motor to code it or make it move in some way. This station evolved over the week to become a 3D collaborative city created on the large base board table top (this way totally unplanned but a group one of the sessions suggested it and away they went.....the results are growing everyday!)
3. Kalidacam & 3D Art
I love this app, I provided PD for our teachers this week on transforming the digital into a 3D physical piece of art using embellishments and cut out pop ups mounted with polystrene. Students used the app in the Makerspace and then took the matt board, polystrene and 2 A4 copies of their favourite Kalidacam shot back to class to work on the finished product. I can't wait to see them as what they have begun with is even better than I imagined.
4. Geometric Sketch
Using a range of 'Antlered' photos as the initial inspiration I introduced the concept of mirrored art. We used clear transparencies to draw over half of the photo with a vivid and then 'imprinting' onto our matt boards by drawing over with a blunt pencil. Learners were prompted to do any variation that they chose. In the first session one chose to completely sketch it freehand, clearly an amazing young artist. I envisaged half photo, half geometric sketch but I am looking forward to seeing the finished products as so many of them came up with their own creative ideas and concepts. Several teachers have decided to do this whole class as learners were so engaged and experimental with their ideas.
5. Tinker - a take apart station
This is always such a popular station. I have to continually be on the hunt for items to take apart and make sure I am clear with ONLY using items from the designated bin...one eager learner almost had my new blender (that made sea foam the day before) in pieces today!
6. Game making
This was a last minute addition to the sessions just a couple of nights before as I came across it on Pinterest...I had no idea it would be the most popular station in every session. We had some very creative and challenging pieces made, such a variety. I am glad I pushed learners to 'think outside the square' and not to just copy the design that was in the instructions as many of the first group did. The variety of designs was great to see and the detail that many learners added.
Heres the link to the instructions
I wonder what the kids will call me, today one said "I'm looking for the Apple Teacher"......and another said "Are you Mrs Maker?" ......funny.