As you might already know, this is one more reason I love STEM challenges so much. They're naturally enjoyable and engaging activities for kids that are chock full of academic rigor (when done properly/with intent).
With STEM challenges, you don't have to lose instructional minutes because your kids have holiday fever; you can channel their energy for good! Win/win!
For the past few weeks, I have been giving walk throughs of a set of five (5) Thanksgiving challenges that follow the needs encountered by our intrepid Pilgrims as they set up their new settlements:
- Mini Mayflower (Get to where you're going)
- Protect-a-Pilgrim (Build a shelter)
- Pumpkin Picker (Gather available food)
- Corn Cultivator (Set up sustainable food source)
- Turkey Transporter (Once all major needs are met, there's time for fun!)
We're nearing the end of the Thanksgiving journey this week with Corn Cultivator.
Premise:Students design one or more farming tools that will: till, dig holes, plant seeds, and lightly irrigate. Results can be measured in # of tools created and time it takes to fully prepare the farmland. Note of warning: this one can get a little messy, and you'll want to set aside more time than your average challenge.
Where Can I Find Out More?
The video walk-through of Corn Cultivator is embedded below. In it, you'll find all sorts of helpful information about materials, modifying difficulty level, extensions and some tips & tricks to guide you, so you can better guide your students through the challenge. Check it out:
Where are the Others?
Between Oct. 20 and Nov. 13, I'll be posting one Thanksgiving STEM challenge video every Thursday to my YouTube channel and here on my blog. (The final post will come on a Sunday to give you time to implement before Thanksgiving break!)
Until then, you'll find the Thanksgiving bundle briefly described in this post.
All challenges are available individually and in discounted bundles in my TpT store, as well.