At VSA, we recently held our first STEAM Day. We’re currently teaching and learning remotely in Hong Kong due to a rise in COVID cases, but we still made it happen!
The event had multiple aims:
- To promote all things STEAM
- To give students creative, hands-on experiences at home
- To ‘shake up’ remote learning after spending several weeks online already
- To give class teachers a break from planning and allow them to catch up on giving feedback, etc.
As mentioned, the Technology and Innovation team (Fred Yue, John Hendrickse and I) took responsibility for the planning so that class teachers didn’t have to (although they were more than welcome to prepare their own activities if they wanted to). We planned eighteen different activities and prepared ready-to-use slides. Take a look at the Padlet screenshots to see the range of activities!
When planning, we tried to cater for the different age groups and consider the resources that students were likely to have access to at home. While most activities were designed to be standalone fun, we also made connections to current units of inquiry where possible. For example, Year Three students were learning about light and sound.
Class teachers then chose from our suggested lessons, copied the slides to personalise them, and facilitated the lessons. This is where we (the TI team) stop taking credit. It was the enthusiastic class teachers who made the magic happen and ensured that the day was a success. Planning is easy; facilitating those lessons on Zoom with twenty-eight kids is the challenging part (especially with the little ones). They all did a wonderful job!
As you can see, we asked students and teachers to upload their creations to our Padlet. I’ve never seen a busier Padlet! Including additional activities from the class teachers, there are over twenty columns and over four hundred posts! I wish I could share it on here but I better not for privacy reasons. I hope you can see from the screenshots how amazing it is!
I was overwhelmed with pride as I popped into the lessons and watched the Padlet fill up. It made my heart so happy! The kids had an absolute blast and the teachers were incredible. This was a brilliant team effort!
As I mentioned in my previous blog post, I won’t be at VSA next year. I’ll be Deputy Principal at the new sister school in Shenzhen. I expect STEAM Day can be an annual event at both schools. Hopefully, they will all be in person in the future! Fingers crossed!
In the meantime, I think we proved that remote learning doesn’t have to mean Zoom, Google Classroom, Seesaw or even screens! Kids can be creative at home. In fact, working around restrictions with limited resources forces us to be even more creative.
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An excellent post, thank you for sharing an these insights.
My pleasure. I hope it was useful! Speak soon!