Thanks to Tied 2 Teaching, our weekly project day has become STEM headquarters. For approximately two months we’ve been using the STEM Activities, Full Year of Challenges with Close Reading set. We completed eight projects during the review period.
This full-year STEM bundle is comprised of various challenges created for certain holidays and areas of study. There are over 60 projects that can be chosen by the month, holiday, or focus of study. Each project begins with a reading assignment that can be accessed by website or QR code. Discussion questions are provided which can be filled out on the worksheet or answered verbally, depending on your child. Next, the official challenge is presented and the design process can begin. After building, making corrections, and redesigning your child will have grasped the initial concept and created a masterpiece. Additional reading, journal or essay writing, and review questions are also included.
Upon receipt of the STEM Activities, Full Year of Challenges set I opted to save it to my Google Drive for easy access and printing. I definitely suggest storing this on the iCloud, DropBox, a USB Drive, or similar option. This ensures quick printing and immediate access to the files without taking up any space on your phone, tablet, or computer. After storing the files, I picked out four projects we would complete based on our current subjects. Then, I chose four more that we would do just for fun. I printed out everything I needed in advance so I could make adjustments for my younger two. Each project took approximately an hour to complete, most of which involves designing, tinkering, and building. I only had my oldest complete the reading assignments but I did offer my youngest children an age-appropriate summary.
I found the challenges to be fun, extremely engaging, and enjoyable for all my children. Our top four family favorites were designing a foil boat, building a civil rights monument, designing a fidget toy, and building a block structure that can support a tennis ball. The graphics and pictures of examples were colorful, eye-catching, and age appropriate. I liked the reading passages and all that discussion questions were included. The various writing prompts were easy to understand yet required Bear to fully explain his creative process. These downloads provide many options for various age groups so you can easily customize a packet for your child. All of my children used different worksheets to design their projects and answer questions.
Tied 2 Teaching was created by a homeschool dad and full-time teacher of 7 years. He has taught 4th through 8th grade and is currently involved with math and science leadership on his current campus. His experience sparked the creation of the various STEM challenges included in this bundle. Though this product was created for the classroom it can easily be used in a homeschool or co-op setting. We recommend this for 3rd through 6th grade but with adjustments, it can be easily used with older or younger students.
**Watch our Build a Block Structure Challenge on YouTube**
“I think the projects are fun and very creative. I will definitely do it again. My brother and sister were able to use these too because my mom adapted some of the supplies. I like how the writing parts gave you a sense of direction while completing the project. Making adjustments was easy because I could look over what I already wrote or had drawn. The reading parts were good because they weren’t too long. I liked the questions too because you share what you learned. This would be a good activity for all elementary ages. I would like to do these projects twice a week. My mom already printed more for us to do.” Bear, 11 years old
Thanks to Tied 2 Teaching we’ve been able to include STEM into our weekly routine. The STEM Activities, Full Year of Challenges with Close Reading is fun to use and we will definitely continue completing projects.
Click the picture below to see how the Homeschool Review Crew used Tied 2 Teaching with their children.
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