Grade 2 is learning online about Inventions and Inventors
We returned from our February break fresh faced and ready for a productive couple of weeks ahead of us. Students were really excited by the prospect of our new unit and we created a mysterious hook to engage them into thinking deeply about what it could be about.
By Kelsey Middleton, classroom teacher 2 White
We set up 6 stations with a variety of items at each station. We asked students to complete a “What do you see, What do you think, and What do you wonder activity” for each of the items, all whilst thinking, what could this unit be about? The items included old cassette players, old iPods, pens, toy helicopters and many more. We asked our students – from their observations, what did they think the unit could be about…
“Devices”, “electronics”, “How electronics worked”, “How they make electronics”, is what the students came up with. My next question was: “So what do you think our unit could be about then?? “Companies”, “Investigators”, “factories”, they offered. And so we began unit 4…. Inventions and Inventors!
We began work straight away looking at the definition of technology, what it is and what it is not? And how do we make the distinction? We looked at how technology has made our life more convenient and that this has made a lot of people’s life a lot simpler. We looked at the example, well rather blushed, of the toilet, and how without it, what would we actually do? We also spoke about the idea of a door to the toilet being an amazing invention… we certainly like to maintain our privacy when using the loo!
We even had a guest speaker, a Mrs Nancy Johnson, the icre-cream freezer inventor and boy did we enjoy some ice-cream together!
While all this amazing work was going on, unfortunately another storm was brewing in the form of COVID-19. It was a tough time to navigate the safety and correct policies we were receiving from the government, but the students and our amazing parents did a super job. On very short notice, as you know, we were shut down almost overnight and had to think on our feet. Who knew that although a difficult feat ahead of us, the very essence of our unit would be the foundation of what we would use to correspond with our students.
The use of technology whilst maintaining our online teaching has been incredible. Relying on portals made for this very reason has been a hugely enriching challenge for the Grade 2 team and the students. Watching their bright faces give feedback online, read to us, reflect on days gone by, it has indeed made life so much simpler to orientate this process as smoothly as we could have hoped!
Although somewhat unconventional, online learning has been a super success and we are so blessed to have been a part of this journey with our students! Creative videos, online learning through play… what an incredible example for our students of how technology helped us through this unprecedented time!