Designing for Equity and Possibility

As I prepare for my final make the major inquiry question I want to address is, “how can girls gain access to the STEM curriculum so that they have equal opportunities in Science and Math.”  As I design my make with this in mind I am going to try and incorporate as much student-based learning methodology as possible.  Based on what I’ve learned in this course, my PBL will give students a ton of choice, and will allow them to respond to the project in ways that they find engaging and interesting.  It is critical to provide every girl high-quality STEM opportunities, regardless of race, ethnicity, geography, and income level.  With my written PBL I intend to use the plan with the girls in my fifth grade STEM club.  The purpose of this PBL is to engage and serve girls who are often underrepresented in the Engineering, and Design World.

 

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Since another big question of mine dealt with the equity in low-income communities, I see this PBL as an opportunity to share.  My hope is that if this project were picked up and used in an inner-city school, an extension could be taken in terms of “how could underprivileged students convince or persuade their community to give them access to a public garden space?”  My PBL is going to be about planning and preparing garden space.  I decided to choose this since many inner-city schools may not have access to a garden or planting space.  This is an ever-growing concept, and I feel like each year I keep reading more and more about school gardening projects.

Lastly, as I prepare for my final make I still have a bit of resistance based around the digital world.  Another inquiry question this semester was “how can I trust that my students are properly using the internet?”  I’ve always felt very anxious about giving the kids too much choice, because I worry about losing the control of what my students find on the internet.  I decided this PBL will be a great opportunity for me to drop my fears, and give up the control!  I am going to design a Digital Citizenship presentation to conduct with my class.  This way I’ve covered all the basis in terms of internet safety and my expectations.  During this course, each week when we’d read about student choice I’d immediately think, “oh my gosh, the kids would be on the big wide world of the internet!” This is still a really scary concept for me, but I also have to realize that by shielding them I am preventing my students from so many learning opportunities.  One of the most fascinating things I’ve learned about this semester was genius hour, http://www.geniushour.com/what-is-genius-hour/ and I want to give that opportunity to my kids.  In order to do so, I will do the best I can to teach them how to properly be digital citizens.

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Stay tuned for my final share to come!  I can’t wait to see everyone else’s creations in the upcoming weeks!

 

 

 

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