Our teachers have been doing some truly ground-breaking work. The level of innovation and passion in our school is palpable. We have classrooms participating in Genius Hour, coding, connecting with other schools, 3D printing, green-screen video production, flipped instruction, team teaching, augmented reality, and re-imagining learning spaces. I thought that I had grown accustomed to the general level of “awesomeness” in our school…but I’ll never forget what happened last week.
This past week Mrs. Kirchner’s 4th graders had the chance to take one of our “Mobile MakerSpace” carts for a test spin. The cart was loaded with Circuit-Scribe kits that enabled students to draw their own working circuits. As you can see from the short video clip below…student engagement was off the charts!
The most inspiring part of the lesson was the process that Mrs. Kirchner used to introduce the new technology to students. Students were assigned partners and given time to experiment, collaborate, and fail. That’s right…FAIL.
They talked about why their circuits were not working, compared notes, wrestled with frustration and tried again. It was beautiful. When the guided inquiry time was over every single group had successfully created their own working circuit from scratch. Students drew the conductive lines themselves and created unique battery configurations to power their projects.
I was fortunate to be a part of the experience and it was absolutely amazing. I’m talking jaw-dropping amazing. It’s one thing to be issued a science kit full of wires and directions. It’s another to see a group of kids wrestle with failure and overcome it using skills like collaboration, communication, critical thinking, and creativity.
I will never forget the power of failure in the learning process!