Sydney & Simon Blast Off in Their Latest Adventure: To The Moon!

They’ve used STEAM-thinking to save Greenie, revive flowers for the art show, and now Sydney & Simon are embarking on their next adventure that is truly out of this world.

In To The Moon, the twin mice flex their creative and collaborative muscles to create a STEAM-inspired project about the Earth’s Moon, all for a chance to meet astronaut Kris Kornfield!

To The Moon is the third installment in the STEAM-powered Sydney & Simon series, which includes Full Steam Ahead and Go Green, written by real-life twins Peter H. and Paul Reynolds. To The Moon is available now from Peter H. Reynolds’ own book store, The Blue Bunny Books & Toys.

To celebrate the book’s release, we put on our own STEAM-powered hats to develop a few activities for our paper prototyping and fabrication tool, Fab@School Maker Studio:

 
 

Inspired by Simon’s moon-matching game, you can test your skills with the Fab@School Maker Studio 2D Moon Phase Puzzle. Try adding an extra challenge by filling in each Moon phase name yourself!

 
 

Join Kris Kornfeild on her mission and blast off with an animated Rocket Launch pop-up that slides up and down!

 
 

Or cruise through space with the Rocket Flight Path pop-up. Try making new tracks for the rocket to trace for an extra creative challenge!

 
 

Finally, test your FAB skills with the 3D Rocket Ship. Can you change the shape or size of the design? Can you put yourself and Commander Kris Kornfield inside the rocket?

The FableVision Learning team is excited to see what your students are fabricating, animating, and writing! Share your Moon-inspired Fab@School Maker Studio creations by emailing Patrick@FableVisionLearning.com. You may even get the chance to be featured in a future blog post!

But wait! Did you know that our Moon is going to pass directly between the Earth and the Sun on Monday, Aug. 21, 2017? This solar eclipse is a very rare event, and a great opportunity to use STEAM to learn and teach others about our position in the solar system. Check out NASA’s Solar Eclipse resource here.

FABClassroom: Sir Charles Tupper School in Nova Scotia

The following FABClassroom post was written by Laura Kennedy, a third-grade teacher at the Sir Charles Tupper School in Halifax, Nova Scotia. From geometry to storytelling, she says that Fab@School Maker Studio has become a game-changer in her classroom. 

Fab@School Maker Studio is a hit in our class! I fiddled and tinkered with it a bit before showing it to my class and appreciated the “Ready-to-Go” options. I was intrigued and brave enough to tackle the automaton. 

The students were all eyes when I showed them what I made. What I didn’t know at the time was that the quietest of all the students in class was making mental notes of the design. She came to class the next day with a close replica of the automaton to share with the class. Not only was the feat of making one without the specific outline and instruction page incredible, even more so was that she asked to present it to the class. Being shyer than others she stepped out of her comfort zone and stood in the spotlight. She was beginning to find her voice and it was the act of creating and feeling proud of her accomplishment that helped her on her way.

In this way, Fab@School Maker Studio was more than a fun way to represent ideas, it became a game changer.

After attending the one-day FabMakerSummit in Boston, I was even more excited to share ideas with the class in creating, imagining and dreaming.

Beginning with customizing bookmarks, students became familiar with the different elements to choose. What was most interesting in this case was not the instant communication and collaboration of ideas and peer helping but how another particular student rose to the occasion. This student usually requires various supports in the classroom. In this case though, the student independently worked diligently changing the color, texture and adding stamps. Each new element was proudly displayed and shared with others. Bookmarks might have been the task but confidence was the result.

After I learned more about the different elements such as welding shapes and the 3-D viewer, I showed the class who picked up on these skills quickly. I remember mentioning how even how the teachers at the summit worked as a group to problem solve how to unweld shapes. To my surprise, in the time it took to share the story, the student next to me had figured it out and had an example to show our class.

It was the natural discussions that were heard as the students were engaged in creating and learning on the go. We took this a step further and share our items with our Learning Buddy class of grade 1 students. The grade 3-4 students became the teachers when they took the younger students through the process of customizing their own bookmarks.

Connecting the Fab@School to geometry outcomes, students created 2-D shapes. They were modeled after our “Perimi-bot’ robots. Using multiple ways to demonstrate their knowledge benefits student learning and development of their ideas. Since Fab@School has a built in ‘intrigue’ factor, students are drawn to the program and spend productive time creating items. Storytelling to poetry to nonfiction facts of their design process add another element that expands the learning.


Is your classroom a FabClassroom? We would love to feature your school in an blog post! To be featured in an upcoming post, send an email to info@fablevisionlearning.com. You can also tweet your photos with the hashtag #FabMakerStudio! For more posts featuring Fab@School Maker Studio, click here.

FABClassroom: Tiny House Revolution at Stem Launch K-8

The sixth graders at Stem Launch K-8 in Thornton, Colorado started a revolution - a Tiny House Revolution. Every year, students engage in a Problem-Based Learning (PBL) model and are motivated by inquiry-based, hands-on learning.

Best Model-Group 22 Ms. York

Best Model-Group 22 Ms. York

Katherine Klaver, STEM coordinator at the school explained that the students, "are immersed in authentic problem solving and they present their learning to expert panels made up of community experts multiple times throughout the year. " 

This year, about 170 sixth graders used Fab@School Maker Studio to tackle the Tiny House Challenge. We asked Katherine to share a bit more about the program and how the school is applying the digital design and fabrication software into their curriculum. 

Can you share a bit about the Tiny House Revolution and the Sixth Grade Math PBL Panel?

Our sixth graders’ math PBL was called, "Living Small: The Tiny House Revolution." Check out the link to the site, here. Students were asked to consider the following

Context: The cost of housing is skyrocketing. This is causing people to lose their homes or not able to afford them in the first place. There is currently an affordable housing shortage in the Denver Metro area and alternative solutions are necessary.

Problem: How do you create housing that is both affordable and sustainable for a family of four using the specific parameters of the tiny house model (250-1,000 square feet)?

Task: Students will design a tiny home that is cost effective, energy efficient, and can fit a family of 4.

This PBL was rooted in math. Here are some of the standards that were taught:

  • Geometry plays a role in our everyday life.
  • Mathematical models can be used to solve real-life problems.
  • Students are able to reason about relationships among shapes to determine area, surface area, and volume.

At the end of March, we brought 170 sixth graders to the Denver Home Show. Deek Diedricksen from HGTV's Tiny House Builders talked to us and we got to tour about 12 tiny houses.

The kids researched the current housing situation in the Denver Metro area and the need for more affordable options. They utilized their math skills to create tiny house designs that they then created in Fab@School and used the fabricator. Students also build physical models.

Can you share an “aha moment” working with your students Fab@School?

I think the best way for me to answer this question is with some direct quotes from sixth grade students! 

"FabMaker Studio is easy to use and understand. It's one of the best websites I've used for 3D printing! I love how if I needed a shape I could just grab it and move it. TinkerCad is too sensitive for me." ~Logan S. 

"It's easy to see and to run this program. I love how you could see what it would look like before you folded it."  ~Dejanae W. 

"This program helped us figure out the measurements and we determined how to scale it down by a third. We really liked the visual that the program gave us." ~Eric D. 

"I love the magnet tool. It really helped us construct our physical model." ~Jeff D. 


Is your classroom a FabClassroom? We would love to feature your school in an blog post! To be featured in an upcoming post, send an email to info@fablevisionlearning.com. You can also tweet your photos with the hashtag #FabMakerStudio! For more posts featuring Fab@School Maker Studio, click here.