Throughout the electricity unit, Grade V students build an understanding of electric energy through a series of mini-investigations. In pairs, they construct series and parallel circuits, learn the importance of conductive materials and explore the inner workings of lightbulbs. Once they have a foundation in the essential understandings necessary for creating working circuits, they receive electricity tinkering kits comprised of a collection of items hand-selected by Ms. McLean including alligator clips, motors, LEDs, and resistors. Students are challenged to use the skills they’ve learned throughout the unit to craft projects of their own design that are powered by circuits using the materials found in the tinkering kits. There are no instructions – only a few teacher examples for inspiration and a manual to help construct electrical components from every day items like paper clips. As students work independently to innovate and document the scientific process, they are encouraged to learn from their mistakes and empowered to find creative solutions to complex problems. They provide feedback for each other and engage in reflective learning throughout the process. All of these actions and reactions model elements of design thinking, which you can learn more about in this article from the Innovative Parent blog.
Check out the videos below to see our Grade V students reflecting on the process and their Maker Space projects during a recent Morning Meeting:
Watch part 1 of their Morning Meeting presentation HERE
Watch part 2 of their Morning Meeting presentation HERE
Watch part 3 of their Morning Meeting presentation HERE