Currently, all of our CAPS Teacher Education Internship students are working in classrooms around the district. For more information, and a list of current mentors, visit our website at capsteach.org. Our Foundations students are observing in various classrooms and are still working virtually two days a week with one of our Blue Valley virtual elementary teachers.
Right before Spring Break, three CAPS Teacher Education students participated in the Remake Learning Days Kansas City DeBruce Design Challenge. Seniors Molly Thomas, Courtney Farley, and Junior Erin Fitzgerald met with other Metro teams during a two-week period that culminated in a Pitch Presentation. The Teacher Ed students pitched their idea of creating “activity kits” for elementary teachers and students coordinated with objectives and essential questions for grade levels. Below is a summary of what the students presented in their pitch.
- We are CAPS Teacher Education students interested in future careers in education as well as students of the pandemic.
- This year, most of school has been remote learning and hybrid learning. in fact we have never met the other half of our class in person. we have lost engagement that is important in school
- We remember elementary school as fun and engaging but because of the pandemic the elementary student’s experience has not been the same. Many are still remote, and the ones who are in person have lost the social aspect of learning
- How do we create a fun, engaging, and informative learning experience for elementary students and something to make the lives of their teachers a little easier?
- In the Fall of 2020, we created a conference for students called the Kids’ Konference
- Teachers could click a zoom link to take them to a synchronous activity to engage their class, led by us CAPS Teacher Education students
- Everyone involved had a good time and we discussed doing this again.
- We are proposing to provide students and teachers with fun, informative and engaging activity kits that we call CREATIVITY IN A BOX. As a way of analyzing our market, we reached out to teachers in a survey format to see if this was something that they would be interested in. Of the 57 teachers who responded, over 83.9% said yes. Learning from our previous experience, we offered the option of activity kits, something these teachers would welcome into their classroom. Our current design is for students in person and if schools go back to virtual we can make adaptations as needed.
- We want to provide these kits for teachers and elementary students in our district
- During our prototype round, we plan to target five classes
- Each kit will contain the materials necessary to complete created activities, packaged in boxes with our CAPS Teacher Education logo and instructions
- The purchase of boxes, 5 packages of construction paper, and 5 craft kits containing varied materials, as well as miscellaneous objects give a total of $345
- We will gather feedback from those involved and, if we receive positive response, we will make plans to create more kits in the future for more classes of students.
- The kits will provide engaging activities to promote student learning
- One example for an activity emphasizes the idea of friendship. Teachers can read a book about friendship and then students will use the items provided in the box to create a gift for a person in the class.
- This allows students to become friends with their classmates despite being in a pandemic.
What value does it bring?
- These kits and the activities created will bring joy and learning to elementary students in a very trying time as well as make the lives of teachers easier
- For this project, we will need to locate funds to purchase the materials necessary to create these and possibly additional kits
- We hope that you can see the value in our project and help us to make the livesteachers easier and students more engaging.
This was a great experience for our students, and it laid the groundwork for a potentially inspiring project for next Fall.
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