Review of: Elementary from Worms to Wall Street
By: Ken Ellis
The video called, “ Elementary Projects from Worms to Wall Street”, was an awesome video. The video depicted students and teachers from Newsome Park Elementary School. The teachers in the video talked about how important project-based learning was to their school and students. During the video, the students were seen engaged in a project or real life experience. In the beginning, students were examining worms and the types and characteristics of them. They were experiencing them hands on which allowing students to physically make connections to what they though and what worms really are. The video also explained of real life activities/projects students have begun in the school. Students begin a real life business called, “Flower Power”, and sold flowers for some money. They even sold shares of their business because they were talking about the stock market. The video talked about how students had many questions and they knew the teacher always didn’t have the answers so they always asked for someone who did. These authentic experiences, like bringing an expert in or going on a field trip, are so important and will allow students to never forget what they learned/experienced.
This video was an awesome way to see project-based learning in a classroom and school. I loved all of the different activities/projects that the students did. I even saw first graders creating a PowerPoint about Cystic Fibrosis! Students must be allowed to experience Project-based learning in the classroom. This will only help them as a student experience content and actually live the content. I also saw many resources being used. My only caution to this is that some schools just don’t have the resources like this school did. It all comes down to the money is the answer to so many things when dealing with districts and schools. Until we move past this idea and allow the students to take priority over budgetary issues, true learning will never take place. It is sad but is the world we live in. My classroom doesn’t have multiple laptops and I just cannot go to the computer lab whenever I need to. I know this is no excuse, but it does hinder me. However that being said, I will try to incorporate project-based learning activities as much as possible in my classroom. I will allow my students to live the content instead of just taking notes about the subject. Project-based learning is a tool which I will look to for future activities that will unleash my students’ full capabilities and allow them to use real world life skills.