February 11, 2017See All Newsletters
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This Week: To the Moon | Video Selfie | Poetry of Langston Hughes

Students engage in an engineering challenge: hitting a target with a paper rocket.
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Tch Laureate Tom Jenkins models personal critique through video self-reflection.
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Black History Month Spotlight: Students compare and contrast poems by Langston Hughes.
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I recently received a nice message from a gentleman inquiring about coding and robotics. He is a father of two children — seven and eight — interested in introducing his kids to STEM related careers. Fortunately, there's a wide range of free resources available that would provide the family a head start in engineering and coding. Some of these resources come from STEM organizations, aimed at encouraging future students to pursue STEM related careers. In fact, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that STEM related jobs will grow by 20% between the years 2010 and 2020, compared to 14% for other occupations.

Without hesitation, I responded with some of my favorite STEM resources. For example, I highlighted the news that the Lego company is launching a brand new building and coding kit this year. Even when they're very young, kids love building things and getting their hands a little dirty. My students are no different. Even in high school, they enjoy watching their own creations come to life, so many of my lessons prompt students to build. And we don’t always need Lego blocks to build something. Even simple tasks like, “create a name for your own shoe company” allows students to construct their own world around the task of the lesson, making space for student imagination to run amok.

Joshua KwonJoshua Kwon
Teacher Laureate at Teaching Channel
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Matthew Colley’s students participate in “structured academic controversy” to consider the root causes of social problems and the role individuals and social systems play in creating and perpetuating the issue.

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Kindergarteners can handle a lot – even an eighth grade engineering lesson. Tom Jenkins gets invited to lead an engineering activity for a group of kindergarteners and discovers that young students are born engineers.

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