The Science School Yard: Science Hand in Hand with STEM Prosthetics

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Science Hand in Hand with STEM Prosthetics

I am always looking for ways for my students to feel like they can make a difference. Always looking for ways that my students who come from poverty don't always have to worry about buying supplies to make a cool project. During our 5th grade FOSS Levers and Pulleys Unit, for example, we use the video Caine's Arcade to incorporate STEM and the Engineering Design Process to show how something that one person can do does make a difference. The video also inspires young people to be creative even if you don't have a lot of supplies...a plain cardboard box can become something more than a container. It can open up new possibilities and allow for a young brain to think outside the to speak!

If you are like might be trying to find ways to make your science lessons more engaging while making sure that you still cover the standards that your district requires of you. Our district requires me to use the FOSS units and for our 4th grade right now, we are in the middle of the FOSS Human Body Unit. I was can I have an engineering project that still focuses on the human body, but lets them get a break from the FOSS kit. I came across a video that once again inspired me! Take a look...

Just like Caine's Arcade, young people are making a difference and changing people's lives this time! What a great way to spark their interest and get them hooked. to set it up...

1. We go through the engineering design process. We focus on the five main components and I always prep them for what might happen if they don't get it on the first try. This helps them understand that yet may be in their future.

2. I offer up time to work on their iPads to design a model

3. Once done, they share their ideas with their table group and decide on what they will build

4. I set up an area for supplies. This time we set up a smorgasbord for them to come to. They walk in line to pick up supplies after bringing a list with them.

5. Once teams get their supplies, it is time for creating a prosthetic hand. This is not an easy task, however we always have some form of success...this can be little such as a finger that actually moves, or a team that can actually pick up an object.

6. We always leave time for modifications, however my students get so excited that they want to take it back to their rooms to work on it!

7. I can't wait for next week when they share with the whole class their engineering design model!

I have to HAND it to them...they really love STEM activities...

Throughout our FOSS Human Body Unit, however we have many opportunities for review. If you are looking for ways to incorporate human body ideas, digital research, or human body review into your human body curriculum check out these helpful resources and  ideas out over at the Science School Yard:
Human Body Review Task Cards, lapbook, skeletal system qr code review, and digital research all right HERE!

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