BY Rachel Kuklinski
Minot Forest School
The purpose of this proposal is to obtain 2 WeDo Core Set 2.0 Lego Education Kits (Animal Communication, Extreme Habitats) that will support all of our learners in a diverse way. Teachers will build differentiated instructional activities that will facilitate the development of skills for each of our students in Wareham’s 4 focus areas: Leadership, Scholarship, Citizenship and Stewardship. The kits and accompanying curriculum ideas align engineering and science, with explicit support in literacy skills. Instruction will engage students at all levels, and be adapted to use for the facilitation of skills in oral language, reading informational text as well as text in narrative form. Students will also use written language with authentic purpose. Through the open ended and hands-on activities included in Lego Kits students will experience concrete examples of concepts in Life Sciences that they can then connect with the more abstract concepts of vocabulary, language, written form, and higher level thinking. Students will apply these concepts to inquiry based student centered projects that they will research and present independently. Both the existing curriculum and student driven activities will align with projects done in partnership with Buzzard’s Bay Coalition, and will be used for community service to Wareham. These kits will add dimension to the learning of each of our students; from the gifted to those that struggle.
How will the project be evaluated (e.g. how will you gauge its success)
Evaluation of the overarching project will be measured through student and teacher feedback, ongoing reflection logs (teachers, students), and increases in student performance and engagement on their final projects. When applicable, feedback from the Buzzard’s Bay Coalition will also be included. Reflections and surveys from students will include insight into the 4 focus areas of the Wareham Vision Statement: Leadership, Scholarship, Citizenship and Stewardship. We expect our students to take the initiative to develop projects of their own from the information that is learned during the exploration of the materials. Final projects will be shared with the Wareham Community, as well as with the Cape Cod Community Foundation and Bank. The purchase of the WeDo Core Sets will help Wareham children to receive that opportunity.
Benefit to the students and the school
The 2 kits that have been selected correlate with the Massachusetts State Standards in Science and Technology, as well as with the essential questions and content of the main units in our Core reading system: Reach for Reading by National Geographic. They are aligned with the Massachusetts Standards in Literacy and Language Arts. The concepts of each kit are developed through inquiry and exploration, and will focus on animal communication and extreme habitats. Animal Communication and Extreme Habitats as well as Man’s Relationship with Nature, are essential ideas that the current core reading series, Reach for Reading (National Geographic) emphasizes. Furthermore, they support the activities in community service that the Minot Forest School has initiated in partnership with the Buzzard’s Bay Coalition. The kits will be available to our 3rd and 4th grade students as well as to the students who participate in our CARE after school and summer camp program where hands-on academic experiences are essential. Their reusable nature will allow many students to benefit from this purchase.
Timeline of Project (when will you do the project, if applicable)
We will begin implementing the project with 4th grade classes with high numbers of students in intervention, as soon as we are able to purchase and set up the kits. The project will go on as long as the materials last. The re-usable quality of the kits adds to the value and benefits.