Teacher Experience: “Aquarium Design” Task for 6th-7th Grade Students
A Defined STEM Learning Experience From:
6th/7th Grade, All Subjects Teacher
Mountain Valley Academy (CA)
Here’s What We Did:
To start this project I created a student page that only included the materials I wanted them to work on. I had my students perform research, watch the videos, and take notes using their 1:1 Chromebooks on the materials provided by Defined STEM. They continued their research online by finding the materials that would work best to build an aquarium and the cost associated with purchasing everything needed including the tank, pumps, etc. Then, students put their creativity skills to the test by designing three different kinds of aquariums where the shape and aquatic environment varied. Students shared their designs with the rest of the class.
Why Defined STEM Was the Perfect Fit:
Students love working independently on their Chromebooks as they did research for their project. By easily creating a student page for the task, they were able to only see what I wanted them to see, so there was no distraction during the research time. Because they were able to work independently and use technology, they were very motivated.
We did this particular lesson when we were learning about volume, so this performance task fit very well. It also incorporated literacy skills through the research while incorporating aspects of engineering, design, and creativity.