Students demonstrate their learning through performance-based assessments and express their conclusions through elaborated explanations of their thinking.
Standard 1.5 Narrative
At Fayetteville School our students have frequent opportunities to exhibit their abilities and knowledge gained through STEAM learning experiences. These activities give students the practice needed to develop the skills necessary to become successful in the 21st Century through critical thinking, communication, and collaboration. Our teachers work diligently to create tasks that pin point the higher-order cognitive skills, creating STEAM tasks that have a significant impact on our student outcomes. Students are able to present their learning, experiments, and work samples to visitors to our school as well as stakeholders within and outside the school family through unique and blended project based learning events and adventures.
It is evident that students at Fayetteville School have an in-depth understanding of material and STEAM when sharing their learning with parents and other stakeholders during student-led conferences or through their digital portfolios. Our upperclassmen model this during their end of year Senior presentations. Another example of collaboration and STEAM leadership is our daily news and educational broadcast, the Daily Howl. Each of these occasions give our students opportunities to have a public audience as they explain how STEAM learning has enhanced their educational experiences.
Fayetteville School will continue our success with portfolios through the development of the rubrics for communication as well as providing students with checkpoints for their digital portfolios to ensure students are on track and successfully completing requirements. We also plan to utilize our digital learning specialist and our system technology specialist to mentor and work with new teachers entering Fayetteville School. Each year we also plan to add additional requirements to our student portfolios so that student will continue to grow in their reflection and presentation of their learning.
Area of Focus
It has been discovered that although our students excel at sharing their experiences with others there is a marked need for students to hone their skills in verbal and written professional speaking. Communication is an important skill for every student in today’s society to master. Advancements with STEAM professions and greater competition in colleges makes improving student communication skills a must.
Plans to Improve Area of Need
To combat any deficits, Fayetteville teachers will instruct students on how to correctly utilize and develop rubrics. This will allow students to pre assess themselves and add public speaking emphasis. Fayetteville teachers will also work to extend portfolio presentations, beyond the senior class.
Students worked independently to read, research, write, and create a WeVideo on a Historical Figure. Students demonstrated their learning in a Wax Museum. At the conclusion of the Who Was Wax Museum they collaborated as an entire grade to create a website to demonstrate their learning. The link below leads to the website.
Build Your Own Fishing Pole
A group of students benefited from a grant from the Alabama Department of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries by participating in the Creek Kids Program at Tannehill State Park. They learned about Alabama’s watersheds, the water cycle, and protecting aquatic environments.
Later in the year, another invitation was also given to the Pond Owners Mentoring Kids Program. On the field trip, students learned about fishing safety, how to cast, how to bait a hook, and how to resist the tug of a fish and haul it onto the shore. These skills were put into actual practice as they fished along the banks.
Teachers invited chaperones to attend the event. Many of them were grandfathers, uncles, and other family members that didn’t typically attend field trips. It was a wonderful trip and great to see so much support from the community.
After returning from the trip, students reflected on the techniques used to catch the fish. Teachers asked students to demonstrate their learning by using the Engineering Design Process to design their own fishing pole. Students had to test their poles to ensure they would actually work.
In this STEAM lesson, students used equipment of their choice to design a miniature golf hole. They were given time to design, test, and redesign the hole before being able to play it. Students worked in collaborative groups to record themselves explaining the process they used to create their design. They also recorded their group demonstrating how to putt the golf ball through their course. After each group videoed their assigned hole, they left their IPAD at their station and everyone was given the opportunity to rotate to another station, watch the demonstration video, and complete the hole.
Written in Bone
Students read Written in Bone The Discovery of Jamestown and created grave replicas based on information they read in the text. They used TinkerCad to design skeletons and printed them on the 3D printer. The groups created a story about how their skeleton lived and died based on the artifacts and information the bones of the skeleton gave. Students created a title and book cover for their story using Canvas. Students presented their projects and taught important facts to 5th graders. After the presentations were over 5th graders were given a writing assessment based on the information they learned. The 7th grade students created rubrics to grade the writing assignments.
The Book Thief
Students in 8th Grade World History were tasked with answering the question: “How can ancient cave art tell the story of the people who painted it?” Students researched cave paintings from the Paleolithic era. After students participated in a virtual field trip to Chauvet Cave in France they chose one painting that they found inspiring to recreate. From this recreation they developed a story to express their elaborated explanations of their learning.
After students read The Book Thief they were asked to compare and contrast the novel with an event in history. Students chose an event in history that interested them. (i.e. WWI, JFK’s assassination, Obama’s inauguration, the fall of the Berlin wall, 9-11, shooting at Columbine, etc.) Students found one quote from that event that represents the event as a whole. They included both the positives and negatives of the event, and incorporated the quotation into the final product in some way. Next, they chose 1 or 2 colors that represent the emotions of that event. Students also included a quote from The Book Thief that best represents the emotions of the event. In cooperative learning groups they created symbols that represent the event using Hummingbird Kits. During presentations groups had to give an explanation for the negatives and positives of the event and why they chose the colors they did to represent the emotions. Students were asked to discuss how this event connects to the brutality of humans in both the real world and in The Book Thief. Students explained how Death, our narrator, would have reacted to this event.
The Book Thief Project
Speed and Distance
Students in a physical science lab activity investigated and performed tests to assess how distance affects speed. Students were tasked with the question, “Does the height of a ramp affect the speed and distance a Hot Wheels car will travel?”. To answer this question, students had to participate in the performance based activity to develop a quantitative understanding of the relationship between speed and distance. Designing their own procedures and parameters provided the freedom to demonstrate their learning using elaborated explanations, specific details and data from the completed designed experiments. The final portion of the performance based assessment was to collaborate with their team and develop a strong presentation that would demonstrate their learning and critical thinking.
Eleventh grade English students demonstrated their understanding of multiple English standards through their performance of a 1920’s Gatsby Party. Students were challenged to collaboratively research multiple aspects of the 1920’s in order to create a party that would mimic that of the 1920’s era: clothing, food, prices, store availabilities, art, music, dance, people, prohibition, and color schemes-in relation to the text, The Great Gatsby. During students’ Gatsby Party, each group was responsible for demonstrating their learning through a Google Slide or a Prezi presentation. Some groups taught party goers traditional dance moves, and some put a new spin on old moves.
Lunch & Learn
Each school year the Talladega County School System hosts a Lunch and Learn Symposium for local business and community members to showcase outstanding and innovative student work. For the past two years the staff members of the school news broadcast; The Daily Howl have been presenters. Business leaders visited The Daily Howl exhibit to learn about how they created the news broadcast and how they continue to improve by involving stakeholders in the process. This opportunity allowed students to demonstrate their learning through elaborate explanations of their daily work on the news broadcast. Presenting to the community helps to build student confidence that will benefit them in the world of work.
Ferris Wheels at School
Students in pre-calculus class were tasked with modeling trigonometric functions in the real world by building a working ferris wheel, gathering data from their creation, and analyzing the data to make predictions. Students worked collaboratively to use the Engineering Design Process to plan and carry out this build. They used basic supplies to create the ferris wheel and then used a hummingbird kit and coding in SNAP! (programming platform) to make their ferris wheel operable. Groups used different motor speeds and later determined how the motor speed affected the graph produced. After the build was complete, students collected data from the ferris wheel measuring height at two second intervals. They worked together to compile all their data into a graph and analyzed the graph to determine which trig function would be best to model their particular graph. They then changed their motor speed to see how the graph changed. This performance based assessment allowed students to demonstrate their learning of trigonometric functions.
Twelfth grade English students read Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales prologue and Pardoner’s Tale. After reading, students were charged with answering the question, “Where is my journey leading me?” To answer this question, students wrote a personal prologue. The prologue followed Chaucer’s style with nine to eleven syllables per line with an AABB rhyme scheme. Characters and two literary devices were also requirements for the personal prologue. Students presented their final product using WeVideo that included voice over. These videos were shared with classmates. This activity was a great way for students to demonstrate their learning of literary skills by providing elaborated explanations of their thinking and connection to their lives.