My problem of practice consists of creating a highly engaging interdisciplinary STEM learning environment for middle school learners in a literacy classroom. When thinking about how to create a prototype to tackle my problem of practice, I considered the following questions:
- How can I integrated STEM in an authentic way?
- How can I put students in the driver’s seat to promote engagement?
- How can I implement components of balanced literacy and STEM in a 60 minute literacy block?
I’ve decided to tackle my problem of practice with learning centers for initial STEM integration. While I work with students in small group instruction, the remaining students work independently or in collaborative groups in learning centers such as: Listening Center, Stride Academy (web based comprehension practice), Read to Someone, Read to Self, and Project. Below is a sample of task cards that have been created for a Creation Station center. The tasks included in the center require students to apply their understanding of course readings in a creative way.
When creating this prototype, I wanted to see how I could integrate NGSS crosscutting skills or Science and Engineering Practices with literacy skills. The tasks I created require students to engage with NGSS Engineering and Science practices such as: developing and using models, engaging in argument with evidence, and obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information. The tasks promote student choice because they can any text and any task. I would like to scaffold the creation center with 4 tasks to start our and then gradually add additional task cards as the year progresses.