MAKERSPACE STEM INI­TIA­TIVE AT TAABINGA

South Burnett Times - - SOUTH BURNETT SCHOOL NEWS -

THIS term Taabinga State School has built and de­vel­oped a Makerspace in the re­source cen­tre.

Mak­erspaces are used in schools to sup­port stu­dents to en­gage in creat­ing, crit­i­cal think­ing, prob­lem solv­ing and col­lab­o­rate on projects.

The space pro­vides chil­dren with the op­por­tu­nity to tin­ker, dis­cover, ex­per­i­ment and build with a range of equip­ment and tech­nol­ogy.

The Makerspace Project, sup­ported by the School Coun­cil, in­tro­duces Sci­ence, Tech­nol­ogy, En­gi­neer­ing and Math­e­mat­ics ( STEM) to our chil­dren through lunchtime ac­tiv­i­ties.

With Lego Ro­bot­ics, Lit­tle Bits, Sim­ple Ma­chine Lego, Bee Bots and Blue Bots, a pro­gram­mable Ro­bot Mouse, Os­mos, Straw­bee and Kinex con­struc­tion sets, chil­dren ex­plore and build, solv­ing prob­lems and creat­ing. Box and pa­per con­struc­tion pro­vide low- tech op­tions, with sci­ence ex­per­i­ments as part of the weekly pro­gram. Here’s what stu­dents had to say: Last week we tried to make slime. This was fun but a bit messy. We added stuff like shav­ing cream, sham­poo and con­di­tioner and baby oil to our slime to make it stretchy. The shav­ing cream worked best with white glue. The clear glue slime went a bit hard. You need to mix in an ac­ti­va­tor like saline or di­luted bo­rax so­lu­tion. If you add too much it doesn’t work. The ac­ti­va­tor has a chem­i­cal re­ac­tion with the glue and starts to thicken. — Am­ber Irvine 5T Straw­bees con­struc­tion is great. It con­sists of coloured straws and con­nect­ing pieces called bees. These can con­nect five ways, three ways, two ways or just one. They are cool. We can make all sorts of things such as cubes, balls, peo­ple, an­i­mals and lots more.

Last week we had a chal­lenge to make cer­tain things. Years 1- 2 had to make a flower, Years 3- 4 made a plane and Years 6- 7 made a bridge.

The flower was easy and mine was huge. The bridge was harder. — Al­li­son Bald­win 1M Ed­u­ca­tional games

OS­MOS are ed­u­ca­tional games for the iPads us­ing phys­i­cal ma­te­ri­als or pen and pa­per.

Year 4 chil­dren have been us­ing Os­mos in maths ro­ta­tions to col­lab­o­rate and solve prob­lems or to cre­ate to­gether.

Prep R has used Os­mos in their class­room as well.

Year 6 boys have been work­ing at lunch break with the Lit­tle Bits.

These are mag­netic cir­cuits and mo­tors.

The boys were ex­per­i­ment­ing with pat­terns and de­signs look­ing at cause and ef­fect.

Their task was to make a car with front and back wheels go­ing in dif­fer­ent di­rec­tions.

Ro­bot­ics has been a part of the Taabinga State School pro­gram this year.

Chil­dren are cur­rently build­ing a po­ten­tial ball ma­chine based on the Great Ball Chal­lenge.

They are us­ing mar­ble size balls to de­sign and build a ma­chine where the balls move around con­tin­u­ously.

The school’s Makerspace vi­sion is to pro­vide chil­dren with a place to play, ex­plore, cre­ate, ex­per­i­ment, and ques­tion.

A place where there are no right or wrong an­swers, where chil­dren de­velop gen­eral ca­pa­bil­i­ties of com­mu­ni­ca­tion, co­op­er­a­tion, col­lab­o­ra­tion, crit­i­cal think­ing, creat­ing and build deep learn­ing.

A Mak­er­faire will show­case the Makerspace ini­tia­tive in the last weeks of school.

NO RIGHT OR WRONG: Stu­dents tin­ker with Lit­tle Bits mag­netic cir­cuits and mo­tors. PHO­TOS: CON­TRIB­UTED Stu­dents test their skills with Straw­bees con­struc­tion. Straw­bees con­struc­tion at Taabinga State School.

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