It was definitely good to teach teamwork ahead of the project. It was also great to teach scissor safety, collect lots of supplies, and work on the project outside. The box cutters were okay, but I didn't order enough and they weren't quite as strong and flexible as we needed. I ordered more paint and brushes, but not enough. Fortunately the kindergarten teacher next door gave us some. Next year I want to give a painting lesson prior to the project too. It was clear that it had been some time since many students had painted, and many forgot about good painting protocols in order to not waste paint or ruin brushes. Many students heeded the message to wear old clothes, but some didn't so next year we have to be more explicit about that too.
All in all it was a great day of building and making. The high points were the words and expressions of enthusiasm that filled the day. It was great to see students invested in the activity throughout the day. Next week students will continue to work on their projects at home and during recess and free time. Then on Friday we'll invite the whole school to play the games during their lunch recesses.
While a bit more teamwork practice with smaller projects may have made some teams stronger, I really like starting the fifth grade year with this project as the project teaches the students a lot about each other and how to work together. Further the project truly solidifies the students, TeamFive, as a community of learners and creators. In my opinion, the project is a keeper.
We had some great supplies for the project this year including the following:
- Lots of boxes
- Paint and paintbrushes
- Duct Tape
- Box Cutters (not enough or the best kind)
- Plastic Sheets
- Little balls (could have used more)
- Recycled plastic bottles
- Plastic cups
- Odds and ends of recycled materials
- Colored paper