Wednesday, October 24, 2012

What’s Right in the School District of Janesville

What’s Right in the School District of Janesville (SDJ) is a forum to recognize outstanding performances and achievements by SDJ employees, students and schools.  The following blog was submitted by one of the School District of Janesville's Elementary Teachers of the Year ~ Shelley Block.  Shelley is a Innovation Specialist at Adams and Washington Elementary Schools.
What is black and white, delicious to eat, and an awesome learning tool?

Students at Adams and Washington Elementary Schools learned that it is the Oreo cookie!
All second grade students participated in an integrative world-wide Oreo stacking project with over 1,000 other classrooms.  As students stacked towers of Oreo cookies they collected data that was used the remainder of the week in math class as they analyzed their results.  Students also went on to complete a taste test which provided them with an additional set of data to be analyzed.  This data was then displayed in a variety of student-generated graphs both hand-made and computerized.
In addition to collecting and analyzing data, second grade students also learned that the Oreo cookie can used across the curriculum in a variety of meaningful and engaging ways.  Here are some of the activities the students participated in over the course of the week:
  • In writing, the Oreo cookie was used as a model for good paragraph writing.  The top and bottom cookie represented the main idea and closing sentences, as the white inside represented the creamy details. Students demonstrated their writing as they wrote an expository piece on how they eat an Oreo cookie. 
  • In Art, students got creative and messy making Oreo sculptures with nothing but the cookie wafers and cream.  They used an iPad to take a picture of their cookie sculpture and recorded their voices explaining the process.  
  • Students challenged their imaginations as they turned an Oreo cookie into an ordinary everyday object creating a digital book titled: “It’s not an Oreo…” 
  • In Physical Education class students learned about calories.  They determined the number of calories in one Oreo cookie and how many steps they would need to burn it off.  Once determined, students were allowed to eat one Oreo cookie and use a pedometer to record their steps. 
The following videos show just some of the learning fun we had!

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