At the end of the first semester, fifth and sixth graders enter a time of project based learning. This year, fifth graders spent ample time reading several mystery short stories. At the conclusion of their reading, students were divided into three groups and asked to do the following:
Work in groups to transform a story into a script. create sets and put together costumes and props.
Work in groups to organize the elements of a story. Create a presentation that explains the mystery’s setting, characters and plot. Then, develop a board game based on that mystery – write player directions, develop setbacks and make game pieces and boards.
Work in groups to write a mystery short story. Bring the story to life by animating it with the StopMotion app.
Each of the group projects were presented and/or performed for a parent audience. To the delight of teachers and parents, these fifth graders proved their ability to innovate, create and work well with a team.
According to fifth grade teacher Catherine Schweer ‘05, "The fifth graders had a blast creating their projects and deepening content knowledge while continuing to develop skills such as collaboration, compromise, group management, communication, metacognition and critical thinking. We had so many great comments from parents, and our fifth grade team was so impressed with how students responded to this challenge!"