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STEM goes digital with these fun and engaging design challenges. 10 apps and 90 challenges perfect for grades K-5. If you are in a paperless classroom or 1:1 with laptops or Chromebooks then these are ideal for you, but can also be used during tech lab time or with the iPad cart.
Find the Websites version (as opposed to iOS apps) here: Digital STEM Challenges Website Version
We all want our students to master technology tools and use them to create original works. Digital STEM challenges are designed to allow students to explore digital tools while creating something using the steps of the engineering design process. The best part is that nearly every topic and subject area can be incorporated into these challenges, so they can be used as a part of your daily academic activities, not as an extra thing to fit into your schedule.
Table of Contents in the main PDF:
3-5 The Process and how it works
6-15 Introduction to the apps that will be used in this resource (all free and able to be used without an account)
16-22 Links to the digital STEM challenge cards on Google Slides and directions for how to access
There are 10 apps used in this resource. If you’re a traditional STEM teacher, think of each app as a “material” for building such as popsicle sticks or construction paper.
Each tool has a page in the PDF that describes it for the teacher. I encourage my students to explore the app as they complete the challenges, so I do not do any formal instruction about how to use the tool. If you’re interested in learning more about how I “teach” technology tools, please check out itechmodel.com
The challenge cards are provided to you as a Google Slides file for each app. If your school uses PowerPoint, simply download the Google Slides as a PowerPoint and share with your students.
The Google Slides file also includes digital journal slides where students answer questions about the design process and their creation.
Each challenge card includes
∙I Can statements based on the ISTE Standards for students
∙The steps of the design process
∙A picture of the app icon
∙9 editable challenges
You could have students complete one, many, or all of the challenges on the page. They are editable so feel free to change them to meet your needs before sharing the file with your students. Also included in the file is the digital journal to complete along with the challenges. I have my students duplicate the blank template slide before they start on their challenge. Alternatively, you could print out the journal pages and have students complete them on paper.
When students are finished:
∙Create a class eBook in Google Slides where students each get one slide to insert their final product.
∙Create a Padlet and have students upload their final product.
∙Have a “gallery walk” where students have their final product up on their screen while they walk around to see classmates’ creations.
∙Have students present their final product to the class
If you're interested in connecting with other technology teachers, check out the Technology Teacher Tribe Group on Facebook.
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