<![CDATA[STEMagination Station - Conversation Station (Blog)]]>Wed, 18 Nov 2015 21:43:22 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[Lego Animation & Horticulture @ Elm Place]]>Sun, 26 Apr 2015 13:34:00 GMThttp://stemaginationstation.weebly.com/conversation-station-blog/april-26th-2015LEGO Stop-Motion Animation

Greenhouse Horticulture
& K'Nex Creations

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<![CDATA[Besties with our Buddies: STEM in Action]]>Sun, 26 Apr 2015 13:21:27 GMThttp://stemaginationstation.weebly.com/conversation-station-blog/besties-with-our-buddies-stem-in-actionSee what we've been up to with our buddies each week as we 
explore a plethora of STEM projects covering numerous 
science, technology, engineering, and math standards!

"FROZEN"-INSPIRED STEM CHALLENGES

Disney's Frozen is a COLOSSAL success...and PERFECT for inspiring "blizzards" of STEM activities! We engaged in the following snow/ice-themed activities:
  1. Create symmetrical snowflakes using K'nex and pattern blocks.
  2. Snow (saltwater) painting
  3. Frozen-themed computer game coding
  4. Solids, liquids, gases observations (melting)
  5. Construct sugar cube "ice castles."
  6. Engineer a better sled for Sven & Kristoff to escape the wolves & Marshmallow (snow monster).

3 BILLY GOATS GRUFF: BRIDGE ENGINEERING

"Who's that trip-trapping over my bridge?!?!" After reading the Three Billy Goats Gruff, our classes were challenged with creating the strongest bridge using only dried spaghetti and hot glue!  This took some architectural planning and LOTS of design improvements!

SEUSS-TASTIC STEM: 10 APPLES UP ON TOP TOWER ENGINEERING

Miss Weinstein and I jumped at the chance to celebrate Seuss’ birthday with some STEM fun, and found Ten Apples Up on Top to be a perfect fit for our weekly STEM challenge.  

Students were given Keva planks (but you could use ANY building materials, purchased or recycled) and were asked to build a structure at least one yard tall that could balance and hold at least one apple “up on top.” Once students achieved that goal, they worked to improve their engineering designs to add more apples to their structures. In the time we had, students were able to support up to four apples on their yard-tall towers.

SMITTEN WITH SCIENCE: VALENTINE'S DAY STEM

Students on Route #125 "LOVED" getting to do STEM experiments with their buddies on the morning of Friday, 2/13. We explored the scientific concepts of chemical & physical reactions, changing states of matter, & the scientific method.  We also participated in creating eco-friendly, 100% edible bird feeders to show our love for our feathered friends during the winter months.

Please scroll through the slideshow below for up-close photos of the experiments as well as action shots of 4th grade students with their Kinder-buddies.  See full details on each experiment in my Scholastic blog post featuring these simple STEM activities that you can recreate in your own home using items easily found around the house!

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<![CDATA[Help Melt Our FROZEN Hearts!]]>Sat, 13 Dec 2014 03:49:19 GMThttp://stemaginationstation.weebly.com/conversation-station-blog/help-melt-our-frozen-hearts
We've been up to lots of FROSTY FUN as we explore the story of FROZEN! To start, we examined varied perspectives of different characters from the tale. We used iPad apps to make our characters talk from their own perspectives.

Then, we worked with Code.org to use computer coding skills to make Anna and Elsa ice skate, and today we worked with hands-on manipulatives and technology to create symmetrical snowflakes. Check out photos from these previous session below and look forward to updates on our FROSTY FUN after next Friday!
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<![CDATA[Who's Afraid of the Big, Bad {or is he?} Wolf?]]>Fri, 21 Nov 2014 15:18:03 GMThttp://stemaginationstation.weebly.com/conversation-station-blog/whos-afraid-of-the-big-bad-or-is-he-wolfTo kick off our STEM unit on the Three Little Pigs, we started by examining PERSPECTIVE. This is one of our CENTRAL CONCEPTUAL THEMES across all subject areas for the entire year. The story of the Three Little Pigs is a PERFECT TALE to use as a study in perspective, because we only ever hear the story from the PIGS' perspective. We exposed our children to both.

Pigs' Perspective

Wolf Perspective

Then, students were divided up into their buddy pairs to use an app called ChatterPix to make talking digital versions of the pig and wolf to share their perspective using technology.

Bricks, sticks, & Straw...we Tried them ALL!

After examining both perspectives, students had the chance to take on the role of the piggies using one of the 3 materials to build houses that would hopefully withstand another wolf attack. We made this challenging, but only letting students use pretzel sticks for sticks, dried fettuccine for straw, & graham crackers for bricks. Icing served as adhesive (mortar) for all. Students went through the entire engineering process, including sketching their ideas in order to create their houses made of food. {We did NOT eat them, of course--YUCK!}
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<![CDATA[Thank You, Foundation 112!]]>Thu, 16 Oct 2014 13:54:36 GMThttp://stemaginationstation.weebly.com/conversation-station-blog/thank-you-foundation-112You made our dreams come true!
We are BEYOND grateful to You! Picture
Thank you VERY MUCH to the 112 Education Foundation! Due to their generosity, we were able to purchase a plethora of STEM tools, building materials, and other engineering items that can be used for COUNTLESS purposes during our STEM buddies sessions, our Hogwarts Academy after school program, and more! We will continue to utilize recycled items, junk, donations, and simple materials for some engineering challenges, but having these REAL TOOLS and MATERIALS make our creations more complex, give students experiences with new materials to try on the same challenges, and allow us to compare the same process & challenge using DIFFERENT materials (Ex: building Rapunzel's tower out of spaghetti and marshmallows -vs- building the tower out of cool materials we purchased using the grant money).  

We can never fully express how truly grateful we are nor how magical it is to see the students in action, working hard as little engineers, showing teamwork, determination, using materials purchased with our grant money. We hope that our documentation via photos/videos, blog updates, special events, and more will keep you up-to-date on our latest adventures! Foundation 112 members are ALWAYS welcome to pop into our STEMagination Station activities, so contact us if you wish to see the "little geniuses" in action!


Learn more about our FABULOUS, GENEROUS 112 Education Foundation by watching the informative video below!

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<![CDATA[Help Rapunzel Escape!]]>Wed, 15 Oct 2014 14:03:17 GMThttp://stemaginationstation.weebly.com/conversation-station-blog/help-rapunzel-escapeLast week we took on the PERSPECTIVE of the wicked witch from the story of Rapunzel by helping her create a tower SO TALL that her hair could never reach the bottom...and therefore she could never escape. THIS WEEK, we helped RAPUNZEL! Using our brand new, totally AWESOME engineering materials purchased with grant money from the 112 Foundation, students work together to create an ESCAPE DEVICE/CONTRAPTION to help Rapunzel escape, despite the extreme height of her tower. Check out the amazingly clever creations below!
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<![CDATA[Rapunzel Tower Challenge]]>Mon, 13 Oct 2014 13:41:10 GMThttp://stemaginationstation.weebly.com/conversation-station-blog/rapunzel-tower-challengeTo kick off our engineering challenges this year, we began with the classic tale of Rapunzel. After reading the story, students worked in STEM pairs/small groups to create the tallest, free-standing Rapunzel tower using ONLY dried spaghetti and marshmallows! See the process & their creations below!
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<![CDATA[Our First 2014 S.T.E.M.agination Station Buddy Meeting!]]>Mon, 06 Oct 2014 13:39:14 GMThttp://stemaginationstation.weebly.com/conversation-station-blog/our-first-2014-stemagination-station-buddy-meetingFor our FIRST session together, we had fun using Legos which were purchased with the money given to us via our winning grant from Foundation 112. We kicked off our time together rocking out to the "Everything is AWESOME" Lego adventure song/video.  Then, 4th graders were paired randomly with Kg. students. Together, they had to use Legos to create 3-D models of items beginning with specific letters the Kg. class is working on. 

For example: One group constructed an IGLOO, because the Kinder class is working on the letter/i/. Another group built slides, since /s/ is another featured letter. 

Check out snapshots from our first session below!  We can't wait to meet again this week and in the weeks to come!
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<![CDATA[There's No Place Like STEMagination Station!]]>Fri, 06 Jun 2014 18:45:31 GMThttp://stemaginationstation.weebly.com/conversation-station-blog/theres-no-place-like-stemagination-stationPicture
THANK YOU to everyone who supported our Wizard of Oz STEMagination Station Family Night! For those of you who made donations, attended, or helped in any way, please know how much we appreciate you.  Our event was a huge success and we hope everyone enjoyed themselves as much as we did!

-Click the image below to see our event slideshow-

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<![CDATA[STEMagination Station Family Night 2014]]>Tue, 20 May 2014 01:12:31 GMThttp://stemaginationstation.weebly.com/conversation-station-blog/stemagination-station-family-night-2014 Picture
R.S.V.P.ing to our special night is just as easy 
as clicking your heels 3 times. 

       
       Click this link to R.S.V.P. with your attendance.
       Click this link to DONATE to our event.
       Click this link if you have any questions/comments.

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