Monday, May 25, 2015

Student Makers! Connecting With Students During The Summer!

As summer approaches, I encourage our K-5 scholars to read, read, read!  We invite the local public librarian, Jenifer Wagner to come to Oak Hills to tell the students about the reading program at our local Heritage Library. I try to go to the library once a week to see our OHE students, hear all about their summer and check out a few books myself! This always seems to thrill and surprise them!

I also remind them of the Barnes & Noble reading contest and our MyOn eBook reading program. (We affectionately turn it into a verb and call it "MyOning"!) Summer reading is one way to prevent the well documented summer slide, so anything we can do to keep students engaged over the summer will benefit them in the long run!

This year I am trying something new!  I am inviting students to share their creative "maker" projects with me and contribute to our Maker Wall! Homemade forts are encouraged! They can post a photo of their creative summer projects to our Padlet Wall! Click to go to the wall! or just click below.

I am also building a Maker Wall at school, so once the projects are posted on the virtual Padlet wall, I will add them to our physical maker wall in our library!  When students return in the fall we will have a wall full of student creations! Once I fill our display area, I plan to grow it to the surrounding wall!

I invited students a week ago and our wall already has six entries! One 2nd grader created a book about reptiles! One student programmed a new watch face for his watch! Our students are creative all the time! 

Summer is the perfect time for our students to exercise their creativity, engineering skills and pursue their passions!  It always seems to me that their creative juices flow better when they are just a little bored! When the siblings are gone to camp, the neighborhood friends are at the cabin and the gaming systems are worn from overuse, children begin to dig deeper to find something to do! This is the creative sweet spot for maximizing their ingenuity! By asking them to share their maker projects with us at school, I am hoping that they will inspire each other. I want their maker projects to be fun as well as have purpose and intent behind them. I believe students learn from these experiences even when they aren't trying to! The maker projects that they try at home are born of their own initiative which combines their own curiosity, passion and interest into the learning experience! WOW! That packs so much learning punch! I am so excited to see and hear from students this summer! Keep the creativity flowing!