Yup, a whole-lotta acronyms there. In expanded terms my Course 5 Project is entitled, Maker Kids: Do It Yourself Science Technology Engineering Art Math After School Learning. I completed this project with our ECE Art Teacher, Tara Ogle. We came up with this project as a way of incorporating COETAIL teachings and our passion for self-directed learning. We opened this ASL session up to UES students in grades 3-5.
How did we use technology?
- Google Form for signing up for the ASL via a link on my STEM Blog
- Google Groups used for sending messages to our ASL participants
- Exemplars to guide students and give an idea of what we hoped to achieve throughout the ASL
- Class Dojo to track badges that students would earn as they worked through the ASL ‘syllabus‘
- Online tutorials were found and used by students to guide them through their projects
- YouTube to share students’ final project reflections
- QR codes to access students’ final project reflections
- Google Forms used for submitting students’ final project reflections to be displayed outside the STEM room
What types of active learning were our students engaged in?
During each session of our ASL, we started with a small group discussion on the carpet where we asked students to share their plan for the class. Each student had 1:1 personal iPad use, so it was easy to have them watch their tutorial and gather documentation which they would use in their final reflections.
Both Tara and I would rove throughout the classroom and would assist the students if they required any help. The majority of our students were very excited to take an active role in their learning and all students were successful in bringing all required materials for their projects.
How did we manage our classroom?
Since there were two teachers and only 11 students, we were able to guide students along the process and encourage problem solving. We used Class Dojo to award badges as students completed set tasks. We projected Class Dojo on our BenQ board and ended each ASL session with an opportunity to share which badges were awarded throughout class.
Which ISTE Standards did we address?
The ISTE Standards we selected to use in this project were:
- 1a Articulate and set personal learning goals, develop strategies leveraging technology to achieve them and reflect on the learning process itself to improve learning outcomes.
- 3a Students plan and employ effective research strategies to locate information and other resources for their intellectual or creative pursuits.
- 3bStudents evaluate the accuracy, perspective, credibility and relevance of information, media, data or other resources.
- 6a Students choose the appropriate platforms and tools for meeting the desired objectives of their creation or communication.
I feel that by designing the badges, we addressed each standard without having to really ‘teach’ or explain the standard. We used specific questions to gauge whether the student had met the badge criteria.
How did we assess the students?
We didn’t really assess whether students could complete a certain task but I did find that by having students reflect on the process, they were able to self-assess as to whether they were satisfied with their level of progress.
Students were more satisfied when they had a completed project on display, rather than a semi-completed one.
What are my overall reflections of the project?
I think the goals were met throughout the ASL and I was really happy that the projects were on display before and during our You Me Community Day open house. Using QR codes allowed other students to view the YouTube videos or Google Slides that our students had created and allowed our ASL students to reflect on their learning process.
I think our ASL was a very worthwhile opportunity for students and I enjoyed having an opportunity where students could make mistakes and problem solve their answers. The small class size allowed for honest and open dialogue in a safe environment. Oh, and we had a lot of fun 🙂