This week the 3rd graders will be introduced to our MakerSpace, while the 4th and 5th graders will review the organizational changes in the room and be reminded of the expectations for this activity. All students will sign in to Google Classroom, if for no other reason than getting in the habit of typing in their gmail address and password and signing out. In Google Classroom, students will find the three basic ways to engage with MakerSpace: (1) Creating something in the physical world using items from the MakerSpace Consumable crates and paper station, (2) creating something with MakerSpace activities that include hot wheels, cubelets, snap circuits, playdoh, cup stacking, marble maze, legos, and battery-powered car tracks, and (3) creating on their computer using Tuxpaint, Tinkercad for 3d printing models, animations, along with many other options. There are slides in the TechNeckSites site that contain how-to videos for origami, coding, circuits, crochet, and movie making. Students will understand the expectation that they need to leave the room the way they found it before lining up to leave.
Students showed a great deal of responsibility in leaving the computer lab the way they found it after their time at the MakerSpace. I adjusted my lesson plan with the 3rd graders by calling two students at a time to work with me on logging in to Google Classroom, completing the assignment, and then logging out. I believe the time they are spending in small groups to learn the procedures for using Google Classroom is going to pay HUGH dividends the rest of the year. I also changed the consequence for not logging out of Google Classroom. One of my primary frustrations last year was having students fail to log out of Google Classroom. I would stop everyone to remind them multiple times. I began giving discipline marks. Nothing seemed to work. This year I told them if they are not responsible enough to follow the procedure, they will not have the privilege of going to MakerSpace or having free time on their computer. I have been AMAZED at how effective that consequence has been. After much consideration, I have decided to change the consequence. If a student fails to sign out of Google Classroom, they will have to use their free time or miss some time in the MakerSpace to practice logging in and signing out ten times. Below are scenes showing the variety of activities students were engaged in. Click on the image to see a clearer view.