Students in Ms. Klimek’s 3rd and 4th grade class extended their science lessons beyond the traditional textbook when they engaged in project-based learning last week. Each student became a scientist and a teacher when he or she presented an individual project based upon a scientific principle of his or her choice. The students researched their topics carefully and then shared their findings with the class through a variety of formats. Some students prepared PowerPoint presentations with multiple photos and video evidence of their learning. Others created detailed poster boards with artwork and diagrams. Many of the students also brought in materials to conduct hands-on demonstrations. There were no limits to the ways in which the children shared the evidence of their unique investigations.
Following each science presentation, students engaged in a question-and-answer session with their classmates. Through this interactive and exciting session, students challenged themselves to dig deeper. Learning came to life as the children made connections between the topics of study and their own daily experiences. Gentle encouragement from Ms. Klimek allowed the students to see the meaning of their efforts and experience the joy that comes from independent learning.
Ms. Klimek reminded the students that even though they are young, they are called to develop their God-given gifts and grow in their interests. What will they become someday? If their recent presentations lead to future career pathways, the possibilities are endless. In 15 years, there may be an electrician, chemist, meteorologist, veterinarian, astronomist, pilot, or geologist from this 3rd and 4th grade classroom. May the children remember and always hold tightly to God’s promises; “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” -Jeremiah 29:11