Forest Road School Supports STEAM

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Forest Road Elementary School students recently engaged in a Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics Symposium over the course of several days. Students from each grade level had the opportunity to explore different STEAM activities around the building which fostered creativity, critical thinking and innovation. 

In the library, students tested their speaking skills with a green screen project. Faculty members utilized an iPad and the application program Green Screen by Do Ink to film the students. Each grade level that visited the library had a different green screen task. For example, third-graders researched different places around the world and while in groups, collaborated on a script about their location of interest. After memorizing their script, each group went in front of the green screen to do a public service announcement about their country or city of study, which included what to do there, fun facts and what you will learn if you visit. 

Over in the school’s computer lab, students were hands-on while participating in a variety of MakerSpace activities. This included working on challenges to build and create different models with Legos, STEAM kits and Magformers. With the help of faculty members, students also learned how to code with Bee-Bots, mini robots that assist with critical thinking and problem solving. 

In addition to the technology side of the symposium, classes visited the gymnasium to enhance their art, science, mathematics and engineering skills. Younger students learned how to create their own bubbles while third-graders engaged in a pom-pom activity which required them to work together to get their pom-pom through obstacles. With the help of art teacher Colette Giardella, students throughout the school worked on Flag Day projects using marbles in paint and straws in paint as part of an art in movement lesson. Students also learned about how the human hand moves through an engineering activity where they created a “robotic” arm with string, paper and straws.

The STEAM Symposium was initiated last year by Principal Erin Malone and Assistant Principal Jennifer Lewner after seeing how much effort went into STEAM initiatives throughout the year.
“We thought it was a great way to keep instruction as a focus in June when it sometimes can be perceived by the kids that we are done for the year,” said Malone. “The tasks are all developmentally appropriate with different grades working on different projects. The commonality between all of the grades is collaboration, problem-solving and FUN!”

Forest Road School has set a prime example of how a school can successfully incorporate STEAM initiatives into their building. Forest Road faculty and district administrators have even presented their MakerSpace at the May 2018 Nassau Association of School Technologists meeting at Nassau BOCES. Due to their knowledge and success, local library media specialists from Garden City and New Hyde Park visited during the STEAM symposium where Malone and Forest Road Library Media Specialist On Kyung Joo walked them through the activities and educational tools that the students have benefited from.