The staff of the Kovler Family Library has been busy as bunnies so far this Spring. SK students spent some time designing and building treehouses that would allow their friend Moose (from Corey Rosen Schwartz & Rebecca Gomez's What About Moose?) enter and exit easily even with his sizable antlers. And as the story of the book suggests, they worked hard to be good teammates: listening, discussing, collaborating, and compromising as they brought Moose-sized treehouse ideas to life.
Meanwhile, our first graders engaged in a little design project of their own. Each of the three classes read several versions of a different classic fairytale: Little Red Riding Hood (1J), The Three Little Pigs(1B), and Goldilocks and the Three Bears (1G). Each class then went through the design thinking process (Empathize, Define, Ideate, Prototype, Share), pinpointing problems and designing solutions in the TIDES garage using soft maker skills (cardboard, paper, yarn, pipe cleaners, etc.) and 3D modeling (via TinkerCad). The final products were shared out among the entire grade level.
Problem: Everyone said “No” to the wolf if he asked to have a job. The wolf couldn’t get a job. | Solution: We made hypno-glasses that actually hypnotized a person to tell the wolf where to get a job. The person might give the wolf a job or money. We started out with cardboard and cut out to eyes for the wolf. Blue wrapping for the eyes.
Problem: Baby Bear's broken chair. It broke because it was made out of wood. Goldlilocks was rocking a lot and too heavy for it. The chair was not sturdy enough because it was a rocking chair. | Solution: Goldilocks can't climb trees. The solution was to put the chair and table up in a tree. Then Goldilocks can't get to the chair. And there's lots of vines so she might get her toe stuck in it.
As part of their year-long focus on the question "What does it mean to be a community?" the third graders spent their library time studying Jane Addams and Hull House. First they read the book The House that Jane Built by Tanya Lee Stone and talked about why Hull House would be important to the community. Students were given folders with pictures and drawings from Hull House that were shared from the Hull House museum archives and other sources. They were also given packets with facts and information about Hull House. Students took notes about the services provided and why they were important for the neighborhood.
After the research and exploration part of the project, students were given a design challenge: create a virtual Hull House museum in Minecraft. Students worked in small groups to design and build replicas of Hull House focusing on highlighting what they learned about the organization and the services that Hull House provided to the community.
The library also played host to Parker's first HACKATHON where 5th-12th graders worked in teams to create AR and VR worlds. The fun extended into the evening as students collaborated, coded, dragged, and dropped their worlds into existence.
Ms. Lesak held a Jewelry Making Workshop for Upper School students using our new favorite piece of technology, the Glowforge Lasercutter. Many earrings and necklaces were dreamt up and brought to acrylic life that afternoon!
Ms. Barr's 11th Grade US History got in on the maker-action, creating stop-motion animations that illustrate and explore their conclusions about the implications of industrial capitalism.