This year, Buckley held its second Library Makerspace Exhibition to showcase student’s understanding of content through building and designing. The projects combined informational, visual, and spatial literacies that pushed students to think critically and solve problems.
Nursery teachers Mrs. Wakhale and Mrs. Zwick worked with librarian, Stephanie Temple, to transform recycled materials into musical instruments. Tissue boxes became guitars, oatmeal containers became drums, and paper towel rolls became rain sticks. The inspiration came from the book entitled The Animal Boogie by Debbie Harter, where they listened to the sounds of the rainforest.
Our Kindergarteners used their engineering skills to create blueprints of world landmarks; then they erected them into three-dimensional forms. This project was a way for young learners to see how community builders worked together to construct important cultural landmarks.
“It’s always a surprise to witness how the students carefully deconstruct the different geometric shapes down to the smallest details to build their landmarks,” said Mrs. Temple.
Our second grader urban planners and architectural engineers used a variety of visual tools to map different types of communities to transform their ideas into three-dimensional environments to represent rural, suburban, and urban communities. The second grade teachers, Mrs. Rosenthal and Ms. Raffaele, also had students document their work on their iPads to produce written texts to exhibit alongside their projects.
“It was a perfect combination of High Tech, High Touch,” said Library Director, Patricia Russac. “Building and designing is about making thinking visible; it reinforces the content to make it stick.”
Fifth grade design thinking teams, or D-Teams, do a variety of projects that involve problem solving as it relates to history with Ms. Russac. They used the Makerspace to develop the first civilizations of early city-states in Mesopotamia. They worked from ancient maps of Ur, Erido, Nippur, and Uruk to plan each one based on the basic features of a civilization. In art, Mrs. Demopoulos, helped them build the ziggurats and create Mesopotamian figurative sculpture from the time period.
“Interestingly, several fifth graders reference their second grade community projects regarding urban and rural communities, because Mesopotamian city-states included both,” said Ms. Russac. “It reinforced the idea that when students make something, it matters and the concepts stick.”
The 14-foot robot in the exhibition was the mascot this year. Students in the after school “Build It” program constructed it as part of the annual Global Cardboard Challenge event sponsored by the Imagination Foundation. The event celebrates creativity by giving students an opportunity to play and learn using simple materials to build the things they imagine.
The exhibition was a huge hit!CLICK HERE
to see photos