On-line Resources for Homebound Families #1

2020-03-22T17:21:41-06:00

I, like the rest of the country, am at home these days.  Fortunately for me, I have always been good at keeping myself entertained.  Today though, many kids aren't as good at that as in generations past.  Anyone in my childhood household who said the word 'bored' would get such a long list of chores to do from my mother that the word would never pass through those lips again. In an attempt to help out families everywhere who are in a situation they never imagined could happen, I have been scouring the internet.  I have several goals in mind.  The [...]

On-line Resources for Homebound Families #12020-03-22T17:21:41-06:00

A Visit With Master Artists and Teachers – Michael LaFosse and Richard Alexander

2018-11-23T19:14:08-07:00

A local museum is hosting an exhibit entitled "Origami in the Garden" until March of 2019.  It's a fantastic series of metal sculptures based on origami designs scattered throughout the gardens of the museum.    As part of the exhibit's kick-off activities, Michael LaFosse and Richard Alexander, master origamists, were invited to visit local schools and to teach workshops at the Botanic Garden.  I was fortunate enough to be able to attend one of their workshops.  It was great! Using giant squares of paper and the wall as their flat surface, Michael and Richard showed a group of about 25 how [...]

A Visit With Master Artists and Teachers – Michael LaFosse and Richard Alexander2018-11-23T19:14:08-07:00

Lessons Learned from Camp Cosmos

2018-11-19T21:28:33-07:00

            How do you decide if an event is a success? Usually the number of people in attendance is a good indicator, and one that the state wants us to report. But what if you only have three people from your intended audience attend? Can you still call that a successful event? To celebrate the end of World Space Week in October, we held Camp Cosmos at one of the local parks. We had paper rockets launched by compressed air, made space packs, offered "moon sand" to play in, made galaxy art, and more. It was a [...]

Lessons Learned from Camp Cosmos2018-11-19T21:28:33-07:00

Science Kits for STREAM Educators

2017-09-22T17:32:29-06:00

I have recently discovered a great not-so-new resource for teachers and librarians - Biology in a Box! This program, now in it's 25th year, was created by University of Tennessee/Knoxville professor Dr. Susan Riechert to help science teachers in the Knox County, Tennessee, schools who were lacking a strong science background, or adequate resources to provide strong STEM programs in their schools.  Each of the soon to be 13 thematic boxes is chock full of cool, attention-grabbing manipulatives which inspire students/children to take a scientific interest in the world around them.  Each box also includes curriculum information for every grade, so that the [...]

Science Kits for STREAM Educators2017-09-22T17:32:29-06:00

Food for Bears in Outdoor Classroom

2017-05-23T22:09:10-06:00

For the second time in as many years, I had the opportunity to participate in the Outdoor Classroom Trip for a local school district. This event has happened annually at the end of the school year for 11 years, and is run by the science teacher at Kathryn Winn Primary School, which is part of the Carroll County school district. The Outdoor Classroom is owned by a local family, open to use by the schools, and is very close to Carrollton, KY, where the school is located. The day makes use of volunteers from the high school, many teachers, parents, local [...]

Food for Bears in Outdoor Classroom2017-05-23T22:09:10-06:00

Tree-mendous Mini Camp a tremendous success!

2017-05-01T08:00:28-06:00

Taking advantage of connections to the county parks department, spring weather, and spring break, we tried a new program idea this spring. A Tree-mendous Mini Camp was held on two days in a local county park; we did a variety of tree-related activities, learning games, reading, crafting, and more. For two and a half hours each day on a Tuesday and Wednesday, we hosted a total of nearly 125 students, teachers, and parents to celebrate trees. My library branch is in a community which includes two public school systems- a county system and a city system- as well as a number [...]

Tree-mendous Mini Camp a tremendous success!2017-05-01T08:00:28-06:00

Poly- What? Learning the language of 3D Geometry

2017-02-04T17:52:03-07:00

    Shapes, shapes, and more shapes.  Circle, triangle, square, rectangle - it all starts of easy enough.  Then it get a bit more complicated when you move from two dimensional to three dimensional - sphere, cylinder, pyramid, cube, prism.  Then, before you know it, your tongue is in a knot, and you're totally confused.  Just what does a decagonal gyroelongated bipyramid, compound of truncated icosahedron and pentakisdodecahedron, or a prolate hectohexecontadihedron look like?  It's all in the name.  The trick is understanding the language of shapes, and a little bit of Greek and Latin.  For help with the Greek and Latin, [...]

Poly- What? Learning the language of 3D Geometry2017-02-04T17:52:03-07:00

Pumpkins! (with STEMs!)

2016-10-16T16:27:32-06:00

Happy October! Like the rest of the known (well, at least here in the Midwest!) world, you CAN bring pumpkins into your programming! But there are ways to do this which include many STEM concepts as well as fun! There are many great fiction titles about pumpkins, some of which actually follow the life cycle of the pumpkin. A few of my favorites of those titles are: Pumpkin Pumpkin, by Jeanne Titherington;     Pumpkin Town! (or, Nothing is Better or Worse Than Pumpkins!) by Katie McKy; and of course, Pumpkin Cat, by Anne Mortimer. The whole host of usual pumpkin [...]

Pumpkins! (with STEMs!)2016-10-16T16:27:32-06:00

Engineering programs? As simple as playing with blocks!

2016-07-23T13:26:39-06:00

Providing programs that fit in the Engineering aspect of STEAM can seem a bit daunting. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition (c.2011) defines engineering as: “The application of scientific and mathematical principles to practical ends such as the design, manufacture, and operation of efficient and economical structures, machines, processes, and systems.” Does that mean that in order to have an engineering program, one must teach, explain, or even fully understand those scientific and mathematical principles? Not necessarily, and that is the beauty of non-formal programming! For many, the trial and error method helps to understand the basics [...]

Engineering programs? As simple as playing with blocks!2016-07-23T13:26:39-06:00

New Life for an Ancient Tool – Making and Using Abaci With Elementary Age Kids

2016-01-01T21:49:51-07:00

              What can you do with a group of kids, corrogated cardboard, a lot of beads, pipe cleaners, and some masking or decorative duct tape?  Make abaci, of course!                         With a little bit of preliminary work, this is a craft program that even pre-schoolers can master.  The tools I used in my program were: -  6" x 6" corrogated cardboard (2-3 pieces glued together with the "tunnels" running perpendicular to one another) If using 3 layers, I make sure the center layer has the vertical channels.  That [...]

New Life for an Ancient Tool – Making and Using Abaci With Elementary Age Kids2016-01-01T21:49:51-07:00
Go to Top