Sunday, January 28, 2018

17-18 Week 17

A whole 5-day week! It was wonderful to have time for building, coding, and working on long-term Green projects!

PPES STEM Lab 1718 wk17 from Kimberly Boyce-Quentin on Vimeo.

Kinder made paper snowflakes, got lots of work done in, and enjoyed a Free Build Friday! 1st grade made chromatography butterflies and then used symmetry to create monarch paint prints. They started work on their Earth Day research project “Monarchs at Risk”. These very productive students completed several lessons AND enjoyed a Free Build Friday too. 2nd and 3rd grade made reused milk carton snowflakes, and worked on their grade-level coding course work. Second grade celebrated several graduations! 4th and 5th grade really rose to the #CardboardChallenge this week! The creativity and attention to detail was fantastic! Ms. Caro and Ms. Riffle’s Kindergartens were our guests for a play day.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

17-18 Week 16

A VERY short week in the STEM lab, but we made the most of it! 
Snowflakes (timely!) were the topic for K, 2nd and 3rd again this week; they researched with BrainPOP, made borax crystal and reused milk carton snowflakes, and designed digital snowflakes in’s Frozen Hour of Code. 1st grade Monarch Heroes discussed symmetry and made chromatography butterflies and got started on their coding class. 4th and 5th grade worked together constructing LEGO Simple Machines, K’Nex structures, and chain reactions. Last week’s 4th and 5th grade classes didn’t get to host their cardboard arcade so with the kind collaboration of Ms. Kindle I was able to bring them back to host Ms. Almanza and Ms. Hernandez’s Kindergarten classes. They were perfect guests! Everyone enjoyed themselves immensely, and even Ms. Swaby dropped by to see the fun!

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

17-18 Week 15

Week 15 – 1/8

I finally finished the make-up testing! It has been a very rough year for cold, flu, and lots of bronchitis as well, but everyone who requested testing was screened. We did manage to squeeze in a couple of good work days in the STEM lab! 

Kinder learned about snow and snowflakes from Annie and Moby and grew their own Borax crystal snowflakes. This week saw the return of Monarch Heroes to the lab! They were introduced to and made their own Borax crystal butterflies. 2nd and 3rd grade also learned about snowflake structure and Snowflake Bentley. They made their own reused milk carton snowflakes. 4th and 5th grade learned about the global phenomena that launched the #CardboardChallenge movement in Makerspaces – Caine’s Arcade. They watched the video and set to work creating their own imaginative and ingenious cardboard arcade creations. We didn’t get to have a game day, but will arrange the schedule next week to invite a couple of Kinder classes to come in and play!

Monday, January 15, 2018

17-18 Week 13

Week 13 – 12/11

There has been a lot of cold and flu around and make-up CogAT testing saw the lab shut down for most of this week also! Pre-K and K did a fantastic job learning about snowflakes and making their own. 2nd-5th programmed digital snowflakes in Scratch. We did squeeze in bit of creative building and I was so interested to see how many 3rd-5th graders chose to make their own video games in the Play Lab on! 2nd grade was able to try out the new Dash robots - they loved them!
This week we held our campus Spelling Bee! See our champion, Zoe, HERE

Next week I will be administering the Iowa Assessments and the lab will be closed. Wishing all the Piney Point community a fantastic holiday season! See you in 2018!

17-18 Week 12

CogAT and Hour of Code

This week the STEM lab was unavailable for classes due to administration of the CogAT test. However, we did turn the computers on for Wednesday! Also our UIL One Act Play team went into intensive rehearsals with a run-through every day during 3rd grade ancillary.

See video of how the troupe’s hard work paid off HERE

Hour of Code - December 6th, 2017

Piney Point celebrated our 4th annual Hour of Code! Students had a fantastic time – particularly enjoying the vastly expanded menu of HOC activities offered by Mr. Contreras and his team did a phenomenal job organizing all the logistics, and as always, teachers pitched in and loaned classroom technology to help make it all happen.

The entire campus was transformed into a computer lab! Student had an extended ancillary period and the ancillary teachers facilitated the Hour of Code activities. The gym, library, Art Studio, Science lab, and of course, the STEM Lab and Computer Lab were each set up with 25-50 coding stations. The campus acquisition of more than 200 Chromebooks made this a much easier process this year!

17-18 Week 11

This week was very limited in terms of STEM lab activity, but for a very good cause! We were thrilled to attend wonderful performances from two of Houston’s outstanding arts organizations – the Alley Theatre and MET Dance. 

Scenes from Oskar and the Last Straw 

Learn about the Alley Theatre's Education Outreach HERE

Highlights from MET Dance's performance

Learn about the company HERE

Also, from 11/30-12/1, I attended TAGT 2017 (Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented annual conference) – here at the George R. Brown Convention Center this year. I love an opportunity to learn from outstanding Texas teachers and shop for new technology, techniques, and ideas for Piney Point!

A look at TAGT 2017 HERE

Pre-K worked on their 4 seasons project and K-5 continued work on their coding classes. 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

17-18 week 10

At Piney Point we have so much to be thankful for - our amazing students and their families, our dedicated staff, and our wonderful network of volunteers and community partners. Happy Thanksgiving to you all!
STEM lab and Ms. Karna's Computer Lab hosted the last few 3rd-5th grade classes for the Bebras Challenge. It was definitely hard fun! Pre-K completed their reused material picture panels for their unit on seasons. Kindergarten completed their Eco-Schools Green Hero capes and worked on their class. 2nd grade did some research for their Family Health and Fitness Fair Expo projects, worked on their class, and all of Piney Point caught Dynamo Fever!

PPES STEM lab 1718 wk 10 from Kimberly Boyce-Quentin on Vimeo.

Here are a couple of our new STEAM Arts Integration activities:
OZOBOT orbits by Dhanalakshmi and Abigail:
ozobot orbit from Kimberly Boyce-Quentin on Vimeo.

and a water cycle mini play by Ms. Thormodsgaard's 1st grade:

Water Cycle from Kimberly Boyce-Quentin on Vimeo.