Block 3: This Week At STEAM Week 1 – Intro Week

This week was Intro Week and the students learned the basics of STEAM.

The day started out with the students getting to know each other by participating in an ice breaker.  The students were given cards with who, what, where, why, when, and how.  Each student had to state their name, school and an interesting fact about themselves.  The next student had to generate a question based on the card given to them and the previous student’s interesting fact.  This also served as a great primer for critical thinking!

Following the ice breaker, the students learned about the STEAM centre, what to expect during the eight weeks and expectations of them.  We then moved on to learning about Digital Citizenship.  We focused on online safety and how to THINK before posting.  Students were taught that their posts must be True, Helpful, Innovative or Informative, Necessary, and Kind.  The students were then introduced to the app Seesaw where they will be documenting and explaining all their work.  They were also introduced to Twitter, where they were shown how to make appropriate Tweets to showcase their work.

We then read a book called A Walk in the Rain with a Brain.  The essence of the book involved showing the students that each person is “smart” in their own, unique way.  The students then conducted a Multiple Intelligence quiz (https://www.edutopia.org/multiple-intelligences-assessment) to give the students an insight into the way they think.

Following lunch, the students were introduced to two of the Pillars of STEAM:  the 4 C’s (http://blogs.winnipegsd.ca/steam/pillars-of-steam/the-4-cs/) and the Design Thinking Process (http://blogs.winnipegsd.ca/steam/pillars-of-steam/the-design-thinking-process/).  They put their learnings into action during an Instant Challenge.  The Instant Challenge will be the cornerstone activity during STEAM days.  Students will have either a Task-Based (build), Performance-Based (acting), or Combination (Task+Performance).  The task they were given was to create a Mars Habitat capable of sustaining human life out of popsicle sticks, straws, pipe cleaners, paper, and mailing labels.  They were given 10 minutes to individually plan, 10 minutes to collaborate with students from their schools, and 20 minutes (ish) to build.  As the weeks progress, the timeframes will be reduced.  After the build, the students debriefed the activity and were asked to reflect on the 4 C’s, how well their teams worked together, did they stick to the plan or change it, and asked for any thoughts on the activity.

Following the Instant Challenge, the students conducted a scavenger hunt to familiarize themselves with the Centres.  After the scavenger hunt the students found out about the third Pillar of STEAM: Reflections (http://blogs.winnipegsd.ca/steam/pillars-of-steam/reflections/). The students watched a video about Reflective Thinking (https://youtu.be/QoI67VeE3ds).  The students then completed their first reflections and were asked to think about how they felt first arriving at the STEAM centre and for all the activities throughout the day.  The students then got ready to go back to their home schools.

Next week is Maker week!

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