In an effort to meet Dr. Griffin’s vision for Educational Pathways for students, we have implemented a program that we have named STEAM Teams. STEAM stands for science, technology, engineering, art, and math. Each teacher selected a topic for their STEAM team that falls under the STEAM acronym. Some of the clubs include bubble-ology (math and science with bubbles), Code Breakers (computer coding), Green Thumbs (growing vegetables in a garden), Stock Market Game (buy and sell stocks in a virtual stock market),  Viva Violins (learning to play the violin),  Fantasy Football Fun (statistics and math in fantasy football), Cache-ing In (using GPS units to geocache), and many more.

Layer students get to participate in a two STEAM Teams per school year with each Team running for 10 weeks. At the end of our STEAM Teams we will be inviting parents to come in and experience everything that their children have been doing, so make sure to keep your eye on those planners and Tuesday Folders!

Project-Based Learning

Project-Based Learning is a research-proven teaching style that results in a large public project or presentation. Each year our Technology Facilitator and our Media Specialist collaborate with classroom teachers to develop and deliver a PBL project. This year, Mrs. Borrazzo and Mr. Erickson have worked to create some new and exciting projects that will give our students real-life skills used in careers in the 21st century. Below is a brief description of each of the projects planned for this year.

Kindergarten students will use the iPads to document changes in their environments. Students will focus on one specific item and document the changes it goes through over the course of several weeks by taking photos of their topic. Using an iPad app called Videolicious, students will create a short video explaining how their item changed.

1st Grade

Students will venture into Layer’s backyard and observe the bird activity that takes place around our ponds. Students will choose one of the bird species seen and learn more about it. Using both print and digital resources, students will research how their bird grows and changes and also how their bird depends on its habitat for survival. Students will present their findings in the form of a Digital Storytelling video.

2nd Grade

Students will research and observe the lifecycle of frogs and butterflies. Students will document the changes that the animals go through over the course of several weeks by taking digital photographs and writing notes. Students will present their findings on a digital cork board.

3rd Grade

Students will research sources of renewable energy and write an informational paper on one source of renewable energy. Students will then take their findings and present their information in the form of a virtual Minecraft world.

4th Grade

Students will learn all about the math and science that go into engineering roller coasters. Using a state-of-the-art roller coaster simulation program called “NoLimits Roller Coaster Simulator 2”, students will design, build, and test roller coasters.

5th Grade

Our 5th grade students will research and write an informational paper on an environmental issue on our planet. Using what they have learned about environmental problems, students will use Kodu Game Lab to program a video game themed to solving their environmental issue.