Music is an indispensable phenomenon in human life. Children need to learn, experiment and use sounds obtained from all kinds of materials. Their melodic concepts are different from those of adults. Preschoolers are primarily interested in sounds and wonder what happened. They tend to learn better in a rich and stimulating environment. The most important factor for the environment is the teacher.

For this reason, we decided to make our own musical instruments in my school to give more musical education to children and to develop their sense of music.

3 and 5-year-old students who took part in the project worked between April 1 and April 30.Our aim is to give children a sense of music and rhythm. To love music. Now they use their creativity to create musical instruments from materials.

How we decided?

Since we do not have a music classroom due to school facilities, we decided to create a music corner in the garden with the children.First, what is a musical instrument, what is it for, what types are there, how to make handmade sample instruments, what materials we will need, what are the shapes of musical instruments, etc. We started by researching its features.For this, we received support from websites such as Youtube, Pinterest and Google. Pictures were shown and videos were watched.Of course, while creating this music corner, we took care to use nature’s own materials. We used all kinds of materials that could be used for music, also using recyclable materials.

Activity 1:

And first we went out to the garden to explore.

The picture belongs and was provided by the Author – Attribute CC-BY
The picture belongs and was provided by the Author – Attribute CC-BY

Activity 2:

While examining the different musical instruments in the classroom after the different objects we found, “Should we make maracas, too?” When I said, they started thinking how to do it.Considering the use of waste materials, they thought that empty toilet paper, play dough box, empty bottles were suitable for maracas in the classroom. Children gave up plastics and decided to use maracas from rolled cardboard. They threw out small objects they found inside to make a sound. (lentils, stones, chickpeas, macaroni) And they decorated.

The picture belongs and was provided by the Author – Attribute CC-BY

Activity 3:

A few days later, as one of the children entered the classroom, he had a walnut in his hand. To eat it, he had to break it first. He started hitting the walnuts together to break them.Just at that moment, I said, “Look how the walnuts sound,” to get their attention. When I said “can it be made of walnut, do you think a musical instrument”, we decided to try it.They watched a video of making a musical instrument from a walnut on Youtube. After getting the materials, they got to work.

The picture belongs and was provided by the Author – Attribute CC-BY

We brought all the musical instruments they made to the garden and started to create our corner with materials such as pots, pans, wooden spoons and cones that they brought from the house.

The picture belongs and was provided by the Author – Attribute CC-BY

We got to work by tying a rope to the ends of the spoons and ladles. First we decided what to put where. It was started to hang on metal with legs one by one by passing through the handles of the pot.

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and the final state of our garden…

The picture belongs and was provided by the Author – Attribute CC-BY

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Can you make art with STEM?

Throughout history, artists have used materials in nature as a tool for themselves. We can be inspired by nature in our activities. People discovered nature. It obtained paint from plants in nature hundreds of years ago and used it in many areas. Our high imagination, curiosity and needs encouraged us to make inventions and obtain products.


We organized Nature-Based activities. We asked the students to explore nature and what they could do with the plants they found. As children make their own products, their interest in science and art increases. We created a problem situation for them. We waited for them to produce solutions. The age group of our activity is 4-6 years old and it continued for 2 days. It reached 8 students and 10 teachers in 95 schools in Turkey.


1- Integrating 21st-century skills into lessons
2- To give children a love of nature
3- Developing children’s imagination and creativity
4- Encouraging children to make inventions
5- To reveal the child who has an interest in art
6- To gain STEM skills

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Design Your Own Shoes

Teachers: Deniz Cemre Cimbar & Özgün Pehlevan

Age: 13-14 years old

Duration: February, 2021, 2 weeks, 4 lessons per week

The aim of this STEM project is to discover that solid pressure is related to force and surface area with the connection to everyday life. For this purpose, students were asked to design their own shoes by following the STEM steps. The study was applied in the distance education process due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the students had to work individually.

Throughout the entire study, the engineering design process is applied to identify, explore, design, create, test, and rearrange the problem. The general flow of the study is as follows:

  1. Identify the Problem: In this step, students investigate the question of “why do we wear shoes?”. By obtaining information about the history of shoes from the past to the present, they reach the knowledge of how the use of shoes has changed with the developing technology.
  2. Explore: In this section, students investigate the general structure of the foot, what is important when designing a shoe, and the features that should be in a good shoe. The purpose of this step is to obtain information about what to pay attention to and how to design the shoes they will design.
  3. Design: Students draw a design for a winter shoe that covers the feet. The limitations determined for this purpose are as follows:
The picture is the author’s own –(Attribution CC-BY)


With this study, we aim to raise our students’ awareness about global warming from an early age and to be ecologically literate by having information about renewable energy sources due to the greenhouse gas effect. Individuals who are ecologically literate act in their personal lives with the awareness they have about how life processes function, such as clean energy and responsible production.

With this project, project partner teachers will learn to make an interdisciplinary STEM plan in accordance with the curriculum-integrated (gain-oriented) 5E model.

In the lessons, the project teachers will learn how to plan, design products, and apply STEM plans. With STEM studies, students will gain the skills of collaboration, teamwork, inquiry, research, critical thinking, solving daily life problems and analyzing what we call 21st century skills.

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Author: Dr. Seyide EROĞLU

Related to 2020 STEM Discovery Campaign activities, we wanted to emphasize the importance and necessity of “recycling” with our students. In the recent past, we wanted to raise awareness of serious environmental issues affecting the world. In order to achieve these goals, with TEMA Foundation Turkey (Turkey Combating Soil Erosion, for Reforestation and the Protection of Natural Resources Foundation), we conducted joint studies. Our activities were held in the period of 13 – 20 April 2020. As one of these works, we designed flower pots from recycled materials.

When the working process was examined, we prepared a work plan with the students first. In line with this plan, we made a distribution of tasks among students. Every week, a group of students completed their preparations and fulfilled the assigned tasks.

First, students created an awareness board on the environment and recycling. This board was prepared as other students in the school can see. There were interesting articles and pictures on the board.

Later, a different group of students prepared a presentation on water consumption in nature. Students made their presentations in the classroom. In the presentation, the problems related to water consumption, the amount of water required for each consumption material and the importance of the water cycle were mentioned. During the presentation, the students answered questions from other students. In addition, awareness tables about the amount of water required for each consumer item were created and various places in the school were hung.

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