Following Peter Pan’s shadow

Teacher: Aleksandra Filipovic
International School Crnjanski, Jagodina, Serbia

The project “Following Peter Pan’s shadow” was realized with the third grade students of the International School Crnjanski in Jagodina, Serbia. The project started on April 4th and ended on April 21st, 2022.The main aim of the project was to introduce students to the concept of shadow and the factors that affect its shape and size. The project is based on practical activities and independent work of students. For the needs of realization, a Wix site with the same name was created (link). The story  of James Matthew Barrie “Peter Pan and Wendy” was incorporated into the project itself, which connected the content with non-STEM subjects.

Working in small groups, the students had individualized instructions within the site, with which they had the opportunity to progress at their own pace, cooperate with each other and exchange opinions. One of the working conditions was that each student within the group must have their own responsibilities and contribute to the work of the team. At the very beginning, the group came up with the name of the team: Neverland group.

The contents of the site are distributed in several logically thematically connected virtual stations that aim to develop students’ digital skills on the one hand, and STEM competencies on the other. By connecting the content in this way, the boundaries between subjects are erased, which enables students to connect learning  with life.

Peter Pan’s shadow

First station

After a detailed acquaintance with the way of working, the students independently start working on the first station called Peter Pan’s shadow. The adventure with Petar Pan begins with watching an insert from the film of the same name, in which the students deal with the issue of his shadow that separated from him. Before watching, students are given research tasks on what to pay attention to during the insert, and checking comprehension and encouragement, and thinking about the further course of the project is done through a Fyrefox quiz with multiple choice questions, which discusses the degree of understanding subject.

Picture 1. Peter Pan’s shadow

Shadow art gallery

SECOND STATION

The Shadow art gallery station is based on the Shadow art resource. Due to the impossibility of visiting the pop-up museum, students on the site review selected photos downloaded from the Internet. The students are invited to look at different pictures that show shadow art. Their findings are discussed in class by asking questions:

  • What do you see on the pictures?
  • Which materials did the artist use to create the artwork?
  • How are the artworks created?

The selected photos met with positive reactions from students because they aroused curiosity about this way of forming a shadow that students have not encountered so far.

Shadow makers

THIRD STATION

Introducing students to the way of creating shadows and the factors we need to obtain a clear shadow was done through the Shadow makers station. Through the story of using the objects they noticed in Wendy’s room during the insert (cube, suitcase, glasses) to create a shadow, the students actually realize that they need a light source for that. They independently conclude that the shape of the shadow depends on the shape of the object itself. Special attention is paid to the analysis of materials from which objects are made, so that students can see that transparent objects do not give a shadow (example of glasses). In addition to the given subjects, students choose two subjects of their choice and record their observations in the table (download from site).

In the second part of the work on this station, students get acquainted with the types of light sources (natural and men-made) and check the acquired knowledge through a quiz on the site, receiving feedback on success and additional explanations. Based on the offered light sources, students should recognize which of the listed sources does not belong to the given sequence and explain why. The connection with the story of Peter Pan is made, among other things, by the question of whether Thinker Bell is a natural or men-made light source.

Picture 2. Shadow makers

Challenges

FOURTH STATION

Challenges activities are also based on the aforementioned Shadow art resource (download from site). With thematic harmonization with the theme of the story of Peter Pan through the idea that looking for shade Peter Pan and Thinker Bell made a mess in the Darling family children’s room and that Wendy’s dad took photos of that mess, students get worksheets to solve on their own with practical performance.

This resource has proven to be extremely useful and engaged. The contents are arranged on several levels of complexity. In the first level, students should make a shadow based on the given photos, using 3 cans and a flashlight, and they will sketch their sets from above and from the side. They draw conclusions about forming shadows. This is a great resource for practicing different perspectives, floor plans and scales.

Within the second level, students, creating a shadow based on the given photographs, independently realize that the size of the shadow changes depending on the distance from the light source and its position. Based on the given shadows, it was necessary to predict the position of the light source, which made the practical application of knowledge.

The third level, the most demanding, required students to imagine and draw a shadow based on a photograph of lined cans, applying previously acquired knowledge about the size and shape of the shadow. At the same time, the students had to take care and investigate which object will give which shadow  on the wall.

At the end of this stage of the work, students test the acquired knowledge through a quiz with questions of different levels of complexity.

The students especially liked this part of the project because by performing practical activities, they can experiment and determine how the size and shape of the shadow changes, test their predictions  and draw conclusions by working as a team.

Picture 3. Group work on STEM resource

Catch a moment

FIFTH STATION

The Catch a moment page was called a creative station by the students because, working on these contents, they had the opportunity to show their ideas and express their views on the concept of shadows in different ways, applying previously acquired knowledge.

In the first segment of this station, students, hanging out with Michael Darling, first analyze a photograph that shows the shadows of animals, but does not show the way in which they were created. Only after discovering the secret trick, they receive instructions for performing these movements, on the basis of which they should make their own creations of amazing shadow animals.

Picture 4. Hand shadow art

The Creative puppets segment, among other things, encouraged students’ acting abilities. Improvising the selected roles, the students dramatized the meeting of Peter Pan with Wendy and her brothers, playing with their shadows. A recording of their performance is available on the site itself (link).

Picture 5. Peter Pan storytelling isolated shadow puppets

The enthusiasm caused by the work of artist Vincent Bal (Shadowlogy) was transformed into a series of independent student creations within the Shadow artists station, where using objects from the immediate environment and their shadows, students formed paintings: palm trees, muffins, dogs, octopuses and other works of art.

Picture 6. Following the example of the artist Vincent Bal

Skyline makers – Creative Island in Neverland

The main segment of the project was the Skyline makers section. The idea for the realization was also taken from the Shadow art resource itself. By working on this material, the students were able not only to nurture creativity, but also to get acquainted with the basics of engineering in the true sense of the word. Based on the given work criteria, they constructed the Creative Island settlement in Neverland. The procedure took place through the following stages:

  • sketching the floor plan of the Creative Island skyline;
  • making based on the created plan using materials from the immediate environment and objects of interesting and unusual shape that students previously brought from home (cubes, perfume bottles, spoons, toys, lamps…);
  • determining the name of the city and explaining the choice;
  • making a floor plan with all dimensions so that the city can be constructed in another place, practical measurement of the distance of objects from the wall or light source;
  • reflection on what was done through a discussion about what they learned, whether they applied knowledge in the field of mathematics and when, what was done well, to what extent the defined criteria of success were respected, what could have been done in a different way…

This was an excellent activity for the application of knowledge about dimensions, measurements and units of measure, spatial orientation and settlement plan. By integrating skills from different fields, learning was placed in a real context where students were maximally mentally engaged and focused on teamwork.

Picture 7. Skyline – Creative Island in Neverland

Assessment

FINAL STAGE

The final stage of the project included an Assessment, an evaluation of the organization of the project and an evaluation of the engagement of each student within the team. Students individually completed a five-point numerical or descriptive scale, the Likert assessment scale, assessing each statement. The results of the survey showed that the students understood the given instructions, the tasks were interesting and in accordance with their abilities, it was easy to obtain the necessary materials for the experiment, and they especially liked the story of Peter Pan which was used to complete the whole. As for team work, it turned out that students progress faster in this way, complement each other and exchange different ideas, were successful in applying knowledge to create a skyline, updated content in the field of geometry and improved their divergent thinking.

AIR DRIVEN CARS

The “Air Driven Cars” project aims for our students to create a vehicle with a STEM organization through design-oriented activities. The main theme is to make vehicles with different designs due to the depletion of natural resources day by day. Work on this project was carried out between April 15 and April 29. It is a matter of designing a vehicle that can produce its own energy using natural resources.

Ages of students: 9-10

Teaching time: 9 hours

Online teaching materials: YouTube, Learning Apps, ChatterPix, Scratch.

Materials: Materials may vary according to the student’s design. However, care is taken to use recycled materials. Balloon, scissors, glue, colored paper, plastic bottle, drinking straw, bottle cap, wooden stick can be used.

Project-based learning (PBL) and STEM techniques are used.

At the end of the learning scenario, students will be able to:

  • Design vehicles that can provide its own energy, benefit from the power of nature, reduce labor and produce less cost.
  • Develop students’ creativity and thinking skills.
  • Increase entrepreneurial skills as new ideas and designs emerge.
  • Measure in centimeters and millimeters, which are standard length measurement units.
  • Solve problems related to calculating the perimeter of shapes.
  • Use web2 tools.
  • Make inventions according to the needs of their environment.

Entrance

The teacher draws the attention of the students by entering the class with as many balloons as the number of students in the class. She distributes all the balloons to the children.

“What is inside the balloon?”, “What is the importance of the air in the balloon for living things? “, “Can we use air for other things?” she asks.

She then unties the balloon in her hand and empties the air, allowing the balloon to fly in the classroom. Asks the students, “What moves the balloon forward?”. Thus, the attention is drawn to the subject by brainstorming.

Students are shown a cartoon movie about the subject.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VV09XTBVuAM

Videos of air-powered tools are watched.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bcZ8s_WkYl8

Exploring

Students are told that air, which is of great importance for the life of all living things in nature, can be used as a much greater power when compressed, and useful things can be done to facilitate human life.

A story is read to the students.

                                             DOES THE CAR GO?

On a hot summer day, Mete was playing with his toys at home. He was driving in the car park and shouting “Dut… dutt…”. Then he lined up the colorful cars and looked at them lovingly. He thought that one day he would have a car like this too. He was going to have a red car with big wheels that never ran out of gas.

Then he put his toys aside and sat by the window and looked out. He saw how the sudden wind blows the plastic bag that fell on the road.. ‘Wow .. it’s going well’, he said. While he was looking at the plastic bag that disappeared among the trees, he was imagining his car. He whispered that his car will fly like this, too. Then he looked at the clock on the wall and thought it was more time before his father arrived. Every day, he eagerly was waiting for his father to come home from work and explain how cars worked. During this excited waiting, he fell asleep on the edge of the sofa in front of the window.

In his dream, he found himself in a place with many cars. He saw the red car he always wanted to have and ran towards it. He got in the car, turned the key, but could not start it. Then he looked at other cars. They weren’t working, either. He went to the place where the people were, and asked why the cars were not running. People said that now all the oil fields in the world have dried up and all the resources to keep cars running are gone. Mete was very, very upset when he heard that the cars were no longer working. He was awakened by the sound of the horn outside. He was very happy when he realized that what he saw was a dream. It was only after this dream that he began to think about how to run a car without petroleum fuels.

And suddenly he thought of the plastic bag blowing in the wind…

Students are asked questions about the story.

  • Children, can we help Mete?
  • Well children, if the air has such a power, can we use this power to make a means of transportation?
  • Can we design a vehicle that does not harm nature and does not pollute the air?

After the students’ ideas are taken, the following videos are watched.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7L5zgZxsodM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_B07nPhzGH4

https://www.haberturk.com/ekonomi/otomobil/haber/1239803-hava-ile-calisan-otomobil-yapti

Explanation

The teacher gives brief information about the subject of “force and motion” to the students.

Force: The effect we apply to move an object, change its direction, stop, slow down or accelerate is called force.

The force provides us with great convenience. It allows us to do many things we want to do.

– Allows us to move fixed objects.

– It allows us to stop the moving object.

– We can slow down or speed up different moving objects.

– We can also change the direction of moving objects.

– We can also change the shape of objects with force.

Then she makes a statement about gas substances. The spaces between the particles of matter are much larger than liquid and solid substances. Vapor, air in a flying balloon, air hitting your face when you shake the fan are examples of gaseous substances. She uses the learningapps web2 tool, plays games about force and movement. Children learn by having fun.

By showing the picture above, how can we apply a method, so that the car we are going to design can move in the direction of motion using air?

What can we use to make our car?

What can we use to move the car?

With the questions asked, the students are provided to reach the design they will create.

It has been concluded that the vehicle can move with rapid air output.

The design begins.

Deepening

The teacher divides the students into groups. Attention is paid to the use of recyclable materials in the activities to be held. Materials such as pet bottles, pipette, 4 caps, balloons and glue are given to children.

Children, divided into groups, are asked to design a vehicle that can move with the thrust of the air according to the following criteria.

Criteria:

  •   Your vehicle will be move entirely by the power of air.
  •   Mobility will not be restricted.
  •   Its wheels will be able to move a certain distance smoothly.
  •   Care will be taken to that the distance between the wheels is equal.
  •   Joint work will be done.

Each group makes designs for their tools. The teacher helps them in this process by guiding them when necessary. Students are first asked to draw their designs on paper.

Students begin to build a prototype of their work. Hold the pet bottle from sideways. To make a car, while paying attention to the equal spacing of the wheels, the bottom of the bottle and the middle of the bottle are marked. The marked areas and the covers to be used for wheel construction are drilled with the support of the teacher.

Measured and cut evenly, fine straws are passed through the opening in the sides of the bottle and through the straw, by attaching a cap to the ends of the garbage skewers. The cover is fixed on the other end and the wheels are prepared. Then 2 thick straws are fixed together and one end is inserted into the balloon, tied tightly and fixed, so that the air does not escape.

The center point of the plastic bottle is measured again and fixed to the top. The part to be inflated remains in the air.

The balloon on the vehicle is inflated by blowing air from the pipette. The other end of the pipette is clogged to prevent air leakage. The vehicles will move when the clogged end of the pipette is opened and placed on the ground. Then the students calculate how long the vehicle they designed moves, and how far the vehicle has traveled in a given time period.

Then, the designs prepared by the students are voiced with the Chatterpix web2 tool and they are provided to explain the features of the vehicles.

In the next lesson, an online chat with an automotive engineer is made and the real-life cost, material and price research of the prototype he prepared is researched and the table is filled. Thus, the student has an idea about whether the prototype he/she has prepared can be applied in real life.

CODING AREA

In coding with Scratch, students are provided to design a car racing game that earns points by catching air using code blocks. The game designed with the students under the guidance of the teacher is played in the classroom.

https://scratch.mit.edu/projects/534858200

Evaluation

A graph is created for peer assessment and self-assessment, an evaluation template (it will include the measurement, the drawing of the observation result and the evaluation graph), and a self-evaluation form (the children’s learning before and after the activity is evaluated with a comparative table).

Kısmet TÜRKAN KURNAZ- Akören Primary School – Afyon -Turkey

“Scientix Ambassador”- “STEM Teacher”

Our Green App: Coding and Artificial Intelligence for Sustainability

By Theodora S. Tziampazi

Welcome in our green app!

A virtual assistant will guide you through the buttons of the application and remind you some tips for an environmentally-aware lifestyle. Reuse, reduce, recycle… and let the demo videos speak for themselves.

Our green app: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aedHiYDr7NQ&t=58s

Demo of the English version of the app: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q9HindPjHaM

Motivation sparks

The introductory part before the coding lessons was supported by some thought-provoking content I discovered in the “Terra Mission MOOC: Teaching Sustainability for Action”, a course supported by Scientix. It was the section on Circular Economy (English, Greek) that was most relevant to our work. Circular Economy is also the topic of the 4th Open Technologies in Education Competition organized by GFOSS – Open Technologies Alliance, Hellenic National Scientix Contact Point , while the mobile application is the submission of our school to this competition. I spent many hours with …apps and downs 😉 exploring App Inventor’s cappabilities until I came app with an idea that could meet my teaching expectations and goals and help students gain and app-ly knowledge. The only side effect was an app-etite for puns.

Level App in Digital Literacy

This mobile app was developed in MIT App Inventor 2 programming environment https://appinventor.mit.edu/. The virtual assistant hopefully makes the app more interactive and chats with us thanks to a capple of Artificial Intelligence Components included in App Inventor 2: the Speech Recognizer and the TexToSpeech. Since App Development is a multidimensional task that requires UX/UI (i.e. User eXperience/User Interface) considerations, a few more digital tools and resources were used. These materials are open and free, but there is attribution in the “About” screen of the app.

Think global, act local!

The pilot courses I designed were first implemented in Primary School of Fourni Korseon, Samos, Greece in 2022. As you have seen in demos, the result is adap(p)ted to our local context and it reflects our effort to make a “green” contribution to our remote island. The slogan behind this work is “think globally, act locally!”. I assumed that a particular context could be more meaningful in the sense that it is likely to engage members who identify as members of a school or a local community. But, it is not exclusive to those members; there is an English version of our app for the island (and this blog!) visitors.

Coming …app next! Customize the context

After the pilot courses, which took place in the spring of 2022, I have re-arranged and improved the lessons in order to create a constructive learning scenario for App Inventors- even beginners. The code is open source and will be published soon along with the learning scenario in Greek and English. I am currently refining the tutorial… so that more green apps pop app!

I will show you how to make such an application yourself and how to tailor it to your hometown, place etc. if so desired. In other words: After the pilot…we take off to any context!

I will keep you appdated on the course. Stay tuned!

Until then, smile, learn and protect our planet! 🙂

STEM wishes,

Theodora S. Tziampazi

Primary School Teacher, Scientix Ambassador (Greece)

World Mathematics Day celebrations at our school & Mathematics Unites

People and organizations from all over the world have organized events in their cities.

The theme for the 2022 International Day of Mathematics is Mathematics Unites. The International Day of Mathematics (IDM) is a worldwide celebration.https://www.idm314.org/


We examined with our students how NASA uses the pi number in their work.We prepared activities within the scope of World Mathematics Day celebrations at our school and exhibited them in our pan.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/11OhPzdSHkk2KOtLY-uAtV7RmkMRbqR2h/view?usp=sharing

Scientists working at NASA use PI number 3.141592653589793…. for their missions and evaluations related to the International Space Station.

Quiver Education enriches traditional school content by making it more engaging and entertaining. Pi is a number that deals with circles. A two-dimensional circle is like the circle on your paper. A three-dimensional circle is called a sphere. A basketball or soccer ball
is a sphere. Pi is a decimal that is never ending. It goes on forever!

CONSTELLATIONS GAME: ETWINNING PROJECT

8TH – 28TH APRIL 2022_Constellations game_ Lucía Villar Jiménez

Keyphrase: “Constellations Game: Etwinning Project”

INTRODUCTION

CONSTELLATIONS GAME: ETWINNING PROJECT

The constellations board game is based on STEM and Service Learning. It is developed as an awareness campaign activity to underprivileged children. Students are the protagonists of their own process and product elaboration.

Image game box
image game box

Collaboratively, students from Turkey, Greece, Portugal, Germany and Spain have worked in mixed nationality teams. We worked through etwinning platform as teamworks to make ten constellations of the game. These ones are “Hercules, Andromeda, Orion, Draco, The Little and Big Dipper, Cepheus, Perseus, Casiopea and Pegasus”.

MATERIALS AND RESOURCES FOR CONSTELLATIONS ACTIVITY

On the one hand, digital resources: Hearthstone, TinkerCad application.

On the other hand, electronic devices: 3D Printer, image printer, tablet, computer.

Finally, consumables: Paper, plastic, plasticine, stickers, cardboard and flourescent filament.

STARS GAME CONSTRUCTION PROCESS

The creation of the game has been established in phases and groups.

1.The infant and first year primary school, students created the drafts of the constellations. They used different materials: stickers, plasticine or sugar clouds (sweets).

constellation in plasticine Constellations game etwinning
constellation in plasticine Constellations game etwinning

2. In the same way, the second- to fourth-grade students designed informative cards about constellations. They wrote in English and include the sketches made by infant and primary school pupils as princial image indeed.

Constellations game cards heartstone application  game etwinning

3. Similarly, sixth students designed starts for the constellations. In fact, they used the TINKERCAD modelling programme. Besides, they used the 3D printer to make the pieces (stars and constellations’ names).

Constellations game etwinning TINKERCAD
Constellations game etwinning TINKERCAD
Constellations game etwinning TINKERCAD

4. Next, the older pupils created a leaflet. It contains the game instructions and photos. Even, it provides information on curiosities related to the constellations.

Constellations game etwinning design
design
image

5. Finally, we designed the constellations box. In it we put the pieces of the game and share on etwinning platform too.

image
Constellations Game: Etwinning Project
Constellations Game: Etwinning Project

Do you want to play the constellation game? Look at this!

INVOLVING PARTICIPANTS IN STEM ACTIVITY

Therefore, the eTwinning platform is a good place to communicate with other students from Europe. Further, children can interact to create products in teams. We can speak and work with the new technologies as well as meeting together with your colleagues to debate, play and have a good time.

In fact, we had a good time!

Constellations game
Constellations
Constellations game
videoconference constellations etwinning

For example, this is a video that shows how we work in teams and play together with the constellations game. A meeting with all classmates and teachers of the project.

 constelllation game etwinning

It is a good activity to practise English and learn new words. There are many advantajes that this game can provide but specially, 21St Century Skills. Besides, the game helps to win trust, learn from others, respect rules and sharing it all.

The composition of the game is also easy to do teamworks and work plan. In other words, a good distribution of the parts of the game can favour a great management of tasks and contents of Science, Maths and Technology.

Do you want to know more?

You can go our site to see the steps of our game as well. If you want to do it in class, here you have the following link.

https://twinspace.etwinning.net/200552/pages/page/1789712

Afterward, visit our blog to observe more details.

https://socialrevolutionproject.weebly.com/

CONCLUSIONS

Pedagogical Value of this stem activity:

  1. Promotes collaboration and communication skills.
  2. Students learn by creating.
  3. Stem activities carry out experiential learning.
  4. Rises problem-solving skills.
  5. It promotes logical reasoning.
  6. Enhances the imagination and creativity.

Why STEM?

STEM education should be worked on in our classrooms. This allows students to raise their skills in everyday life. Moreover, to communicate and collaborate in solving future problems by generating new ideas and proposals for improvement. We need a future society based on critical thinking and innovation.

Author: Lucía Villar Jiménez, eTwinning Ambassador

Project Team :

Lamia Büçra Yesil, Mª José Cayuela Torres, Maria do Rosário da Silva, Mª Dolores Chacón Blanco, Vasiliki Dogani and Seref Nur KOÇ.