PBL and STEM for ALL | Southeast Middle School
Project: 3D printer and Little Bit kits that will help to give all students access to the technology for their PBL project products.
Impact: During the second semester of the 2018-2019 school year, all 150 students in the Southeast Middle Magnet program participated in a project-based learning (PBL) activity entitled “Tinkering with History”. This project spanned all three grade levels, 6th-8th.
6th grade students were tasked with researching different ancient civilizations as stated in the 6th grade Social Studies curriculum. They choose the civilization they wanted to research and were asked to focus on finding a problem that the civilization faced. The students then worked in small groups to determine a new and creative solution to the problem they discovered. Students went through the entire engineering design process during this project. They first created their design using every day materials such as construction paper, old cereal boxes, water bottles, and toilet paper tubes. Students then used 3D CAD software to create their final design. Students were then able to use the newly purchased 3D printers to make their designs come to life. The project culminated in a public project night open to the entire school community.
7th grade students followed the same outline, but their topic matched their curriculum, so students tried to solve problems during the Civil War. 8th grade students followed their curriculum and tried to solve problems in different Louisiana industries as well as natural disaster that affect Louisiana.
During the project, we also worked with GenReady who provided volunteers who helped students work through the engineering process. Here are some videos they recorded:
Students really took pride and ownership in their projects. They all enjoyed getting the chance to use new technology. The ADF grant allowed students to have access to technology to help them gain and develop 21st century skills.