STAR Net + Infiniscope = Great Resources and Activities!!

2019-01-17T03:28:34-07:00

  Next Wednesday (January 23) two great resources will be coming together to help teachers and public librarians unite to create a wonderful summer experience for children all across the United States!  STAR_Net, a resource for librarians who provide STREAM programming, is uniting with Infiniscope, a resource used by teachers to teach science concepts, especially those related to space and astronomy.  This new alliance could really bring this summer's theme of "A Universe of Stories" to life for children and youth of all ages, and create a relationship between school and library that could serve to strengthen and reinforce student learning [...]

STAR Net + Infiniscope = Great Resources and Activities!!2019-01-17T03:28:34-07:00

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

Join the Rage! DIY Fidget Spinners

2017-06-24T13:01:08-06:00

      I came across an interesting new type of toy online a few months ago - fidget spinners.  They're advertised as good for nail chewers, autistic people, children and adults with OCD, ADHD, and a variety of other conditions and issues.  I don't know about all that, but I do know they are kinda fun to play with, and now I see them everywhere, including spinning up a storm in the hands of library customers. I've also discovered that people are designing new styles, shapes, and forms of fidget spinners all the time.  Being ever on the lookout for [...]

Join the Rage! DIY Fidget Spinners2017-06-24T13:01:08-06:00

International Peace Crane Swap and a 1000 Cranes From Around the World

2017-04-26T19:00:28-06:00

      I know International Peace Day seems like a long way off, but when you're planning to string 1000 cranes contributed from folders all over the world to display in locations equally as diverse, you can never start too early. The United Nation's International Day of Peace is every September 21.  This year, in recognition of the holiday, the International Peace Crane Project is planning a travelling exhibit of 1000 cranes to promote peace among the peoples and cultures of the world.  Each crane in the display will come from a different part of the world.  People everywhere have [...]

International Peace Crane Swap and a 1000 Cranes From Around the World2017-04-26T19:00:28-06:00

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

Tangrams – Stories, Shapes and Spatial Thinking

2016-02-19T16:03:11-07:00

      Tangrams are possibly among the easiest of puzzles to make, and the among hardest to master.  The traditional tangram is composed of seven pieces - 2 large triangles, a medium sized triangle, 2 small triangles, a square, and a parallelogram - that will fit together into a perfect square, among thousands of other shapes.  The pieces themselves are called tans, while the images created with them are called tangrams.  The challenge of the puzzle is to create various shapes by arranging the pieces so that they touch, but do not overlap.  Patterns can vary from very easy to form [...]

Tangrams – Stories, Shapes and Spatial Thinking2016-02-19T16:03:11-07:00

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
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