Browsing Category

Creative Thinking

Creative Thinking Critical Thinking Learning Commons Makerspace Our TpT Products Project Based Learning Science

Host a Maker Walk

Are your students using your Makerspace and now you want to show off their hard work? Host a Maker Walk. Picture a science fair, but so much cooler because it’s filled with the creations your students made in your Makerspace!

If you’ve ever run a science fair, you know the basics of organizing the event. Pick a date, time, place and then ask students to bring in their projects. They are judged and winners are announced. The difference is very small, but the object of a Maker Walk is to let the makers talk to each other, share their creations and inspire each other, so instead of judging, look to let the makers give each other feedback.

Encourage others to come see the creations. Invite classmates, teachers and local community members. The first even will always be a little smaller but as it catches fire, the word will spread and you’ll have more makers that you can handle. The event can be mandatory, but we’ve had better results just asking for participants. We don’t usually have prizes, but they love to talk about what they’ve created and share it with others.

We created an organization product to help you sort out all the details. It includes examples of some of our events, pictures, possible themes and materials to get your inspired. You can find it in our store.

We hope your students enjoy the Maker Walk as much as ours have. Be sure to tag us in any photos as our students would love to see the creations around the world!

Love the Ninjas

Creative Thinking Holidays and Seasonal Just For Fun Language Arts Our TpT Products Poetry Reading Seasonal/Holiday Writing

Poem in Your Pocket Day

We’re hosting a “Poem in Your Pocket” day as a celebration upon completing our poetry unit in Language Arts. It coincides with the National Poem In Your Pocket Day. This year’s event is being held April 26. It’s coming up soon! You can join us this year even if you haven’t taught poetry in your classroom yet! Continue Reading

Classroom Management Creative Thinking Critical Thinking Differentiation Our TpT Products Professional Learning Project Based Learning

Why You Should Give Students Choices

How would you feel if you knew you were a wonderful writer but the only way you could express yourself was through modern dance? What would you do if you have to recite your report card comments by memory to each and every parent? How would you feel if you were given the choice to write your report cards any way YOU want? (Ours would be invisible!)

Wouldn’t that be amazing? Wouldn’t that make you want to write the best report cards the world has ever seen?

So why are we so determined as teachers that there’s only one way to assess our students? Why can’t they have choices too? Continue Reading

Creative Thinking Critical Thinking Makerspace Our TpT Products Professional Learning Project Based Learning

Work Through the Design Process

Here’s a quick lesson you can do with your students to learn how to use your Makerspace while teaching students to enjoy the process.

Give your students a selection of pieces. These can be any material you have available. We used bottle caps, straws, tape, index cards and string. We also had scissors available. You can use these materials or use what you have in your Makerspace. The items should be flexible enough to let students explore. Continue Reading

Classroom Set Up Creative Thinking Critical Thinking Makerspace Our TpT Products Professional Learning Project Based Learning

What Goes in a Makerspace?

You’ve decided to have a Makerspace. What should you put in it? Any thing you want. Start small. We put out origami paper and a book during the first week just to see what would happen. (Turns out the answer to that question is lots of paper frogs.) But seriously, we made a list of potential items for your Makerspace. Continue Reading

Creative Thinking Critical Thinking Growth Mindset Makerspace Professional Learning Project Based Learning

Why Makerspaces?

Makerspaces: They seem to be all the buzz, but the concept that drives them isn’t new. For many years, we’ve been focused on directing every moment of our students’ lives. As parents, the lives of children are scheduled to the point they never have a moment to decide for themselves what to do. So when did we decide as adults that play is a bad thing?

Exploration is key to problem solving, critical thinking and self-regulation. Children learn by role-playing real-life situations, rearranging toys, touching materials or using items in unconventional ways. So why not include Makerspaces in our school environments? Continue Reading

Christmas Creative Thinking Holidays and Seasonal Language Arts Our TpT Products Seasonal/Holiday

Christmas Word & Logic Activities

You know that week in December when you’re constantly called down to the auditorium for concert rehearsals, some of your students are away sick, some have left for vacation early and you have to keep a classroom full of excited kids busy? Christmas is fun and all, but it’s so hard to keep kids interested in learning and it’s a challenging time to introduce new concepts with all those interruptions. What’s a teacher to do? Continue Reading