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Critters at the Cape: Design Thinking in Action

This year, during the seventh grade's interdisciplinary week-long experience on Cape Cod, the boys participated in a STE(A)M related project.  The goal:  Construct a critter, using what they have learned about the environment, adaptation, evolution, art, and design.

For this new project, created by teacher Gary Kessler and based on work he had done over the summer on spherical shapes, the boys worked in teams of two or four using paper plate spheres and other materials to create their unique creatures that met the criteria outlined.

The boys discussed and proposed an appropriate environment for their creature and the special adaptations, or processes by which the critters would be fitted to that environment. As you can imagine the debates were quite spirited.

Once the projects were completed, the teams prepared a presentation of their critter and their rationale for its existence.  The presentations were then video recorded.

Boys were so engaged in this project that several stayed up past curfew to work on it! As we explore what it means to engage in critical analysis this year, it is clear that the very nature of such interdisciplinary STE(A)M projects, with their interplay between creativity, science, math and the all-important design element lend themselves to deep thinking and problem solving; and prove to be incredibly exciting for our boys!






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