The list of what we are using is very extensive due to the three proposals as well as the whole school nature. We have tried to be as comprehensive as possible with this list but are likely to have missed something.
Biocube - The biocube is more than just a cube--it is the stepping stone to collecting, preserving, analyzing, and reporting environmental data, giving students a sense of what it means to do work in the field. In addition to the hardware needed to create and preserve the cubes and collapsible carts to transport items to the sites, students will need many tools to collect data. There will be enough materials to make 2 cubes and 2 exploration kits so more than one classroom has the potential to complete the project at the same time. By ordering a few of each tool, more students will get to experience the different jobs and facets of the field process. Tools were generally chosen based on suggested supplies by the Smithsonian Institute for this type of project.
Visual Analysis--binoculars, magnifying glasses, digital cameras, trail camera (for virtual
field trips throughout the school year when it is not feasible to visit the
cube sites in-person), microscopes, digital scales
Hands on Analysis--trowels, trays, tweezers, buckets, colanders, spoons, spray bottles,
soil testing kits, disposable gloves
Specimen Collection--Ziplock bags, storage jars, nets
Further Research/Reporting Findings--field guides, binders for field notes
Photo Printers - When students return to the classroom, they will be able to create their own field guides of the specimens they found. While students will be asked to sketch many of their findings, photos will be allowed for unique finds and students who lack fine motor skills due to disabilities they may have. While the teacher will help students upload photos to the iNaturalist website that will be used to connect with the biocube community, students do not have private accounts to keep track of their own findings. The field guides students create will also be used to communicate with parents and other classrooms what the class has been working on. The fifth grade students will be mentoring the third grade students, so these guides will also be a tool to teach the younger students.
Weather Stations - Two weather stations will be purchased with the grant. One will receive weather data electronically, allowing students to interact with technology and focus on the graphical aspects of collecting and reporting data. The other station requires students to go outside and collect data on wind direction and speed, temperature, rainfall, and time manually, focusing on the mathematical aspects. The stations will be located on the school campus so they can be used throughout the year. As the biocube can only be visited infrequently, these will be a practical way to keep the momentum or real world data collection going.
Careers in STEM A to Z - This book will be an introduction to some of the careers available to students who are particularly interested in the work we will be doing throughout the course of the project. It will also serve as a mentor text for students to create their own publications about STEM jobs and famous professionals that interest them.
½” Binders - These durable binders will be used to collect data from the biocube and weather stations, as well as house other related monthly activities and experiments. They will be reused in following years as the project will be sustainable, with mainly reusable materials.
Breakout EDU Kits - Breakout EDU uses an immersive game style to encourage problem solving and collaboration through puzzles in a variety of topics. The kits include all hardware necessary to participate. Hundreds of different lessons, all of which work with the kits are available online or can be created for different concepts by following a format. The kits are resettable and reusable. Six kits will need to be purchased to allow for either multiple class whole group lessons or one class small groups.
K’Nex - K’Nex are a construction toy system that consists of interlocking plastic rods, connectors, blocks, gears, wheels, and other components, which can be pieced together to form a wide variety of models, machines, and architectural structures. The K’Nex will be available to all classrooms to use in taking 2 dimensional drawings and creating 3 dimensional models for activities such as 4th grades unit on underwater ROVs. K’Nex are durable and reusable.
Dash Robot - Dash Robot is an elementary robot that assists in make problem solving concrete and tangible. The Dash will be available to all classrooms for use in all subjects but more specifically in the areas of map making, coordinate grids, and area and perimeter. This device can be reused.
iPod Touch 64GB - iPod Touch is a compact and versatile iOS enabled device. It will be available to run the Dash Robot but with an 8MP camera and 1080p HD video camera will also be utilized for experiments and lessons involving time-lapse photography of the natural world. This device can be reused.
iPod Case Cover with Kickstand for Apple iPod Touch 5th/6th Generation (Blue) - This iPod case will help to protect it from various elemental issues that may be present with its use not only in an elementary school but also in an outdoor environment. It is waterproof, shockproof, dirtproof, and snowproof with an easy to use kickstand for holding the camera still.
SereneLife Clip On Video Camera and microSD card - SereneLife Clip On Video Camera is a high quality, low cost mobile video device which will allow students to showcase their learning in hands-on experiments from their point of view. It will allow for them to meet technology standards for media rich projects in a very accessible way. It is reusable and will be available to all classrooms.
Whole-Class PBL Learning Kits - Whole-Class PBL Learning Kits make learning easy “with an all-in-one kit that keeps the whole class engaged from start to finish and gets kids excited about making a difference... After conducting thorough research, students apply what they’ve learned to create a factual and informative pamphlet, poster or digital slide presentation.” (www.lakeshorelearning.com)
Snap Circuit Mini Kit Class Pack - Snap Circuit Mini Kit Class Packs contain “colorful components that snap together to create working models of everyday devices-teaching students how circuits work. Each component represents one function in a circuit, and components snap together easily and safely, requiring no tools.” (www.hand2mind.com) Kits will be available to all classes and are reusable.
Electromagnetic Exploration STEM Center - Electromagnetic Exploration STEM Center “includes 3 different folders that guide students through activities that help them learn about magnets, electricity and electromagnetism…and build working creations that show the principles in action!” (www.lakeshorelearning.com) These centers will be available to all classrooms and are reusable.
Famous Inventors Problem Solving STEM Kits - Famous Inventors Problem Solving STEM Kits “integrate STEM with history! After reading about a famous inventor, kids use the included pieces and step-by-step design cards to plan, build and test one of the inventor’s important creations—a telephone system, a telegraph or a motion-picture viewer. As students test and streamline each design, they sharpen their problem-solving skills—and discover the thrill of invention!” (www.lakeshorelearning.com) Included inventors are Alexander Graham Bell, Samuel Morse, Thomas Edison. These kits will be available to all classrooms and are reusable.
Global Challenges Project-Based Kit - Global Challenges Project-Based Kit has “students complete meaningful projects to solve real-life problems faced around the globe—using STEM skills to find inventive solutions!” (www.lakeshorelearning.com) These kits will be available to all classrooms and are reusable with minimal supplies.
Student STEM Kits - Student STEM kits are pencil cases containing different types of engineering supplies such as tumbling tower wood blocks, mini plastic cups, toothpicks, playdough, craft sticks, clothes pins, tape, index cards, dominos, pipe cleaners, magnetic blocks, legos, styrofoam, and brainflakes (interlocking plastic discs.) Along with the supplies there will be different challenges and writing prompts. One set of ten STEM kits will be created for each of the 17 classes to have and use. Many of the items are reusable and those items that are consumable are replaceable at a minimal cost. These STEM kits will allow students to work on critical thinking skills in an open exploration setting.
Teacher STEM Tool Kits - Teacher STEM tool kits are small tool boxes containing various tools including: screwdrivers, long nose pliers, duct tape, super glue, and a tape measure. The tool kits will be dispersed to each of the 17 classrooms so teachers have tools available to them that may be needed as they integrate various STEM projects in their rooms.
School Wide Bulletin Board - The school wide bulletin board will be displayed in the gym at Schall School. The bulletin board will be in a location where all students will be able to garner information from it. The STEM careers posters and STEM border will be used to create the bulletin board, which will be changed monthly. Students will also be contributing research and information to the bulletin board after the first two months. The bulletin board will address students’ attitudes toward STEM, show examples of how STEM is relevant to everyday life, highlight various STEM careers, and have a STEM at home connection. This will address students, teachers, and parents attitudes and perceptions toward STEM.
STEM Stalls - STEM stalls are public STEM postings that will be located on the back of the stall doors in each restroom throughout the school. To create these postings, acrylic sign holders, cardstock, printer ink, and command strips will be necessary. These STEM stalls will address both teacher and students attitudes and perceptions toward STEM by providing brief snippets of information.
Family Engagement STEM Packs and Book Sets - Family engagement STEM packs are take home activities that will be sent home with students. The book sets are STEM related and are appropriate for third through fifth grade. The book sets will be sent home with students along with the STEM packs. These resources will help to make a connection between home and school, along with improving parents working knowledge of and attitude toward STEM.