Friday, March 30, 2018

17-18 week 25

A great week for Green STEM!
PPES STEM lab 1718 wk 25 from Boyce Teacher on Vimeo.

Our Arts Access Initiative partnerships continue to be an incredible asset to our students! This week we were thrilled to have Da Camera back in Ms. Leal’s class for their Landfill Harmonic Music Encounter and have Ms. Jean Kuecher back for a marionette performance of Sleeping Beauty and the Handsome Prince.

Scenes from Landfill Harmonic HERE

Scenes for Sleeping Beauty HERE

Well, as an Eco-Schools USA Green Flag campus, every week is a good week for Green STEM, but the beautiful weather let us get lots of habitat and campus improvement work done! We were so worried after the bizarre weather this winter featuring two multi-day hard freezes, but our gardens are bouncing back with less loss than feared! We have used Monarch Money and some very generous sponsorship from Ms. Leal to complete 3 beds, add a new garden expansion, and fill in some soil loss! Two new classroom gardens were added as well – one for Ms. Brown and another for Ms. Leal! Funds have been donated to install 3 more gardens next week!
3rd grade started work on their Earth Day art project and materials arrived for 2nd grade to get to work next week!
Robots we key to turning STEM to STEAM this week! Lower grades designed and created their own Bee Bot mats for the little robots to navigate. They love programming these and make the connection from their programming exercises very easily! The upper grades used Sphero to paint. They created a spectacular gallery of gorgeous robot action painting!
Students also were introduced to a range of OSMO activities! Tangrams, Numbers, Words, and coding with Awbie were big hits this week.
Everyone continues to make progress in their courses!
4th and 5th grade set up their own personal BrainPOP accounts to better manage their own learning. Students quickly mastered the basics of new tools – Make-a-Map, Make-a- Movie, Sortify, and Snap Thoughts for Game Up. They build personalized reviews for their STAAR practice tests this week! Way to own your learning, Panthers!

Saturday, March 24, 2018

17-18 Week 24

It was a wonderful week of STEAM and especially Green STEAM! We also had fantastic Arts Access Initiative learning experiences with Da Camera.
PPES STEM Lab 1718 week 24 from Boyce Teacher on Vimeo.

For scenes from Da Camera’s 1st grade Butterfly Music Encounters click HERE

For scenes from Da Camera’s 2nd grade Stella Luna Music Encounters click HERE

To see our K-2 Name That Book team click HERE

Thanks to the cooperation of the Kinder, 1st grade, and ancillary teams I was able to switch classes back and forth all week so that all K-1 students could participate in the creation of the Earth Day art projects. The official unveiling won’t happen until April, but they made an incredible start!
Also, this week students in the STEAM lab combined design, art, and robots! Classes learned to program and drive Bee Bots and Sphero robots. They created personal mats for the Bee Bots – a zoo, a fairytale land, a farm, and a city scape! Upper grades painted abstract creation with the Spheros.
Of course, classes continued to make progress in the courses as well! 4th and 5th graders created personal BrainPOP accounts and learned to make use of the Make-a-Map, Make-a-Movie, and Snap Thoughts in Game Up. 3rd grade enjoyed a Free Build Day mid-week as a reward for exceptional collaboration and progress in their coding course!
Great job this week, Panthers!

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

17-18 Week 23

It was a full and fabulous lead-in to Spring Break in STEM/ STEAM lab and all over the campus!

HGO was on campus with their Opera to Go production of Monkey & Francine in the City of Tigers. For a peek at this awesome event click HERE.

DaCamera was in Ms. Leal’s class for a Greek Odes Music Encounter. Highlights from this phenomenal lesson can be seen HERE.

Classes are adjusting well to our new work space! K-2 did lots of designing and building with LEGO, Keva blocks, and chain reaction sets. They also had their Jump Rope for Heart assembly.
 Our Kinder Green Heroes had campus clean-up day, 1st grade Monarch Heroes finished painting the panels for the beds that will become the new habitat, and K-2 Green Heroes planted their sprouts on the wildflower hill and in the existing habitats.
Ms. Purvey’s 5th grade hosted the last cardboard arcade of the year (making up for missing it on Friday).
3rd-5th created their own BrainPOP accounts and spent the week learning to use the wide range of tools such as Make-a-Map, Make-a-Movie, Sortify, and the Game Up Snap Thoughts.
Friday was a campus-wide Marathon Kids’ celebration as we recognized classes who have completed their 2nd or 3rd marathons.

Have a fantastic Spring Break!

Monday, March 5, 2018

17-18 Week 22

Another wonderful week at Piney Point!
Highlights from David Zucker’s fantastic Poetry in Motion performance HERE

For a peek at our first Da Camera classroom Music Encounter click HERE

For scenes from the HISD Nutrition Services cooking demo our 3rd – 5th grade enjoyed click HERE

STEM Lab relocated to the Science Lab for the duration of TELPAS testing and we were very busy adjusting to the new routines that involves. K-2 made some excellent progress in and started exploring new tools and materials for creating and building. 3rd-5th worked on their personal milk carton mini planetariums and set up personal BrainPOP accounts. These will allow them to better direct and manage their independent learning projects.
Our Monarch Heroes were thrilled to see signs of life in the gardens! Also, a very generous gift of 500lbs of soil allowed us to set up two new beds! Every PK-2nd class got a reused egg carton seed-starting kit to get us started on replanting and replenishing the habitats!