Thursday, June 26, 2014

Making Plans

What a summer! I am working 25 hours a week at summer camp. I teach drama, songs, and games in my regular classroom.  The work is fun and easy, but it still means my time is taken. I am also taking two online classes required for my certification. I have put it off for too long and now I have to complete 80 assignments by the first week in August. I have only turned in 6 so far. Sigh.

I am off to work on that, but I've been invited to several demonstrations and meetings in my "spare" time this summer. It could lead to some amazing things next year and while they are all still in progress, I wanted to share them here.

Aquaponics
The middle school science teacher and I talked about starting a garden next year in the shared area outside our classrooms. We were planning to put in a few raised plant beds. On the first day of summer vacation I got pulled into a meeting with our STEM coordinator about aquaponics. It looks like things are on track for us to get an educational victory garden system. If all goes as planned, we will have a tank of tilapia and raised beds that filter out the fish waste. It should be pretty impressive! I've already warned them that I lack a green thumb, but I'm will to try.

WeatherSTEM
At FETC I saw a demonstration by WeatherSTEM. I was impressed at all the easy to use data gathered. They install a weather system with cameras and tools that feeds the information to a web based site. The graphs and information available is amazing. The weather system even has its own Twitter account to post auto updates about the temperature and rain for the day. (Here is an example of a site in action.) It looks like we will be getting WeatherSTEM for next school year. My mind is spinning with possibilities!

zSpace
Yesterday I went to a demonstration of zSpace. This video explains it better than I can:



I got to try it out and I can tell you it really is a cool as it looks. It is pricey, but they are looking at the possibility of acquiring funds to set up a lab where we can bring our classes.

Meanwhile, I'm back to my online classes. I hope your summer is going well!

2 comments:

  1. You sound like you are BUSY, BUSY! I know you have to be exhausted after summer camp. I used to run a summer camp for middle schoolers and I was worn out by 8:30 every morning. I'm loving all the new stuff you are getting your hands into. I can't wait to read more about them. Don't even think about replying to me. Get back to your online work! xo
    Alison
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

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