Wednesday, November 14, 2018


This week and last week, our STEAM engineers have been really envisioning how they are going to create a solution to the challenge of how to get the tomatoes down the "mountain" safely to market.  In order for them to fully grasp what they were up against, we took them out to the Tools Trail and showed them where we are going to be testing out their prototypes.

 Then we came back inside and the students started drafting their ideas and building! With real data to work with, such as how high and steep the "mountain" is, they were building with real confidence!

Students have also spent a great deal of time reflecting on their design and working with tablemates and classmates to generate questions around their design, such as How will you make sure that your tomatoes don't fall out?  How will you maintain a slow speed?  How will you attach your design to the pulley?  Then after those conversations, they went back to build again with more intention.

These kindergarteners realized that all of their designs involved creating a "slide" for their designs to slide down, but they hadn't made one yet! They worked together to make one that will be long enough!

This group decided to combine forces when some of them realized their designs were flawed.  Now they are a "super group" and with all that brain power, they know they will have the "best design ever!"

Some students started over from scratch.

But everyone felt like they were heading in the right direction and had a real vision for how to make their designs successful.  A lot of thinking that will certainly pay off!

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

We're On The Map!

Ottauquechee School is officially on the map! We submitted the work that we have been doing with the Global Goals to determine how many and where students are participating in the World's Largest Lesson. Browse the gallery and the map to appreciate how much our students are becoming global citizens, participating alongside over 600,000 other kids across the world!

Check out all the amazing Goalkeeper portraits at parent/teacher conferences and on Facebook!

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Angry Birds and Global Goals #9

This week our students kicked off our unit focusing on Global Goal #9: Industry, Innovation & Infrastructure with a rousing game of real life Angry Birds! It was a blast!

Students worked in groups of four to create towers made of cardboard boxes and then had to launch either a ball or a stuffed animal to knock down their tower using fabric and not their hands.  This challenge was tough for some of our younger students, as they had to work hard on designing a solution to this problem as well as working together.

This first-grade duo melted my heart when, as they were dealing with some issues regarding cooperation and taking turns, one of them exclaimed, "I have an idea! Let's work together to be Goalkeepers!" Knowing that they are getting the larger message that they are stewards of the Global Goals is so rewarding! They are really getting the bigger picture!

As students reflected on the experience, they considered ways they were successful in the challenge and strategies they used to do so, ways they could have worked together more efficiently and how they used failure as a learning opportunity.  We are well on our way to an amazing year in STEAM, as the students embrace the philosophy, the language, and as always, are engaged in amazing learning!

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

OQS Goalkeepers

Our students are committing to be Goalkeepers to help promote a sustainable world and lifestyle in STEAM this week. Ask your students why the Global Goals are important to them, and should be to all of us? Check out this link to learn more!

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Our Future Selves Care About...

After watching the video about the World's Largest Lesson, students thought about their future selves and their possible professions, and which Global Goal might be most important to them. We had future police officers who care about Global Goal #16 Peace and Justice, future marine biologists who care about Goal #14 Life Under Water, and future teachers who care about Global Goal #4 Quality Education, to name a few! These kids really get that the way we treat the world and each other is important, and will be important as they grow up. Big ideas in STEAM this week!