STEM UPDATE

WHITLOW ELEMENTARY

2nd Grade is Jumping into Inquiry!

Our investigation started when we realized there had been some changes around the school grounds over the summer. We noticed trees were gone and land was cleared. This observation led us to a question, "How can we help the animals that have been displaced from their habitats?".

We wanted to help, but first we needed to have a better understanding of the creatures that lived around the school, and their needs. To learn more, we begin conducting research! We decided to focus specifically on frogs and toads, and we got busy gathering information. For guidance with research, some 2nd graders Skyped with nonfiction author Kevin Kurtz. We learned how read with a question in mind, and use text features to navigate informational text to deepen our understanding of these fascinating creatures. Some students and their families met for a Wonder Walk on the Greenway, to generate questions to further drive our inquiry. They continued to gather information from local experts by visiting with Master Naturalists from Forsyth County. During their visit they shared how they monitor frog and toad calls on the Greenway to help scientist collect data about these interesting amphibians.

Through their investigation, students have become quite the frog and toad experts! They are sharing their knowledge through exciting projects such as, interactive maps, data collection through virtual frog monitoring, and the creation of a toad habitat in the garden. The second graders are becoming citizen scientist, and this is just the beginning of their inquiry! As the year progresses we will be investigating all kinds of creature comforts, and thinking about how we can apply what we are learning to help the animals around our school have all the comforts of home.

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THINK GLOBAL ACT LOCAL

This school year each grade level will be participating in a STEM project. This project is linked to the standards and consists of working on solving a problem or project that will make our community better. If your job is in these areas and/or your business can support our efforts please contact us as we would love to have you work beside us on these efforts.


Kindergarten: “What’s Growing in the Garden?”


Kindergarten is learning about plants, and gardening. They are currently growing carrots in the garden, and will be charting their growth. In a few weeks, we will pull them out of the ground, and do some observations. We will also be taste testing our wonderful carrots. Contact person: Carla Mitchell cmitchell@forsyth.k12.ga.us


First Grade: ” What's Living in the garden?"

This project will give learners many opportunities to participate in hands on inquiry(ask, imagine, plan, create and improve) describe scientific data, as they plan simple investigations in order to understand what is happening in their garden through out the year. Students will be participating in virtual field trip experiences, working with community experts as well as providing information (data) related to their garden inquiries. Contact person is Dedra Kirkland dkirkland@forsyth.k12.ga.us



Second Grade: Howling about Habitats!

Our second grade project for the year is all about animals and their habitats. During our first go day we are focusing on frogs and toads. Other topics we are investigating later in the school year are birds, owls, bats, bees and any other wild animal . Contact person: Keith Furstenberg and Natalie Heil kfurstenberg@forsyth.k12.ga.usnheil@forsyth.k12.ga.us


Third Grade: “Rockin’ and Rollin’”!!

As we guide our students into becoming global thinkers and local leaders, we are taking an erosion control challenge. We will be locating areas in our school where erosion is causing a problem. Using the engineering design process, we will design a solution and test it to determine its effectiveness with the help of community experts. We will be taking a field trip to the Dahlonega Gold Mines to pan for gold and sift through different types of rocks. Contact person" Vicki Sexton vsexton@forsyth.k12.ga.us


Fourth Grade: “Composting Craze” Contact Brenda Mahoney bmahoney@forsyth.k12.ga.us

Fourth Grade is tackling waste head on.....they are encouraging each other to not waste their lunch by eating their lunch and keeping it out of the garbage. If by chance there is organic waste they are making sure it gets to the compost bin. 4th grade is also designing worm compost bins so that they can make the most of the organic waste, black gold is their mission. Mr. Black and his staff are working with 4th grade to keep the cafeteria's organic waste out of the garbage as well.


Fifth Grade: River's Alive!

We are working on River’s Alive and having every 5th grade student become stream certified. This means they may participate in any stream monitoring once they have their certification. Students are learning about watershed management and how pollution affects everyone, even all the way to the oceans. If anyone has contacts or organizations in this area who would be interested in giving some of their time to work with our 5th grade students please contact Amanda Meadows a ameadows@forsyth.k12.ga.us

COMMUNITY STEM EVENTS




Fall Festivals-Gibbs Garden

Oct. 10-11-Waterlily Festival

Oct. 17-18, 24-25-Japanese Arts and Cultural Festival

Nov. 7-8, 14-15-Japanese Maple Festival


FUTURE OLYMPIAN

TRACK COMPETITION

Forsyth Central High School Track

Sunday, October 18 • Fee $5.00 per child

Registration: 12 – 1 pm • Events: 1 – 5 pm