St. Patrick's Day STEM Challenge - Get the Gold Print and Paperless Bundle

Grade Levels
2nd - 8th
Standards
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    Description

    Looking for St. Patrick’s Day activities that your students will love but are more than just a craft or activity to pass the time? This St. Patrick’s STEM Challenge (or STEAM Challenge) will keep your students engaged in brain-busting work disguised as fun!

    The basic premise:

    Working against criteria & constraints individually or in partners/groups, students will design and build one or more devices to transfer leprechaun gold from his pot to their own.

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    Resource includes:

    NGSS aligned standards, Grades 2 – 8

    Teacher Tips

    - Links to my 5-part video series on getting started with STEM challenges

    - Materials and timing

    - Criteria & Constraints (including modifications to increase difficulty for older students)

    - Measuring results

    - Universal STEM Challenge Notes & How to Use Student Handouts Post-design extension activities list

    - Link to a video walk-through of the challenge

    Student Handouts

    - Criteria & Constraints List (in color and B&W; editable)

    - Results and Design Analysis (2-page regular spacing and 4-page expanded spacing for primary students included in color and black & white; editable)

    - Discussion Questions (color and B&W; editable)

    Extension templates

    - Write a Limerick

    - Process Flow Map

    - Math Extension options (Identifying even vs. odd numbers; using divisibility rules with 4-digit numbers; using divisibility rules with square roots and exponents (editable)

    - Create-your-own word problems

    Plus, you'll get the 1:1 version for use with Google Slides (TM). See the previews of each resource above for details.


    Feel free to reach out using the Product Q&A tab.

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    Sample/suggested materials for each student or group:

    (Materials you’ll need to do the activity are easily modified.)

    • Pots of “gold” to test designs (1 per group or 1 whole-class)

    • Pots: Halloween plastic cauldrons look the part, but any bowl will do.

    • Gold: chocolate coins, Almond Hershey’s Kisses, Rolos, etc. (two or three bags should be plenty for the whole class)

    • Alternate option: if you also did the “Guard the Gold” challenge, use student-made pots of gold.

    • Pipe cleaners (5 - 10)

    • String/yarn (12 24 in.)

    • Tape (12 - 24 in.)

    • Rubber bands (5 - 10)

    • Scissors

    • Bags to collect gold (1)

    • Ruler/measuring tape

    • Design analysis handouts (included)

    Optional

    • Craft sticks (5 – 10)

    • Paperclips (10 – 20)

    • Straws (5 – 10)

    • Binder clips or clothespins (5)

    • Bowls, cups, or coffee filters (1)

    • Plastic spoons, knives, or forks

    • Decoy/fool’s gold: crumpled yellow paper, cotton balls, etc.

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    What do teachers have to say about this resource?

    “This was such an interesting project to do with my students. I loved watching them come up with different ways to get the gold!”

    “Awesome- loved using this with my second graders the planning/reflection sheets were awesome.”

    “My class loved this activity! We used a balance scale and gram weights to weigh our "gold." Adding 100s, 10s, 5s, and 1s was perfect for 2nd graders. Just another variation to the multiple suggestions in the packet. Thanks!”

    “Adapted a little bit and included religion with St. Patrick. Changed the candy to "counters" and am using positive/negative integers as well.”

    Total Pages
    Answer Key
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    Teaching Duration
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    Standards

    to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
    NGSSMS-ETS1-3
    Analyze data from tests to determine similarities and differences among several design solutions to identify the best characteristics of each that can be combined into a new solution to better meet the criteria for success.
    NGSS3-5-ETS1-2
    Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
    NGSSMS-ETS1-1
    Define the criteria and constraints of a design problem with sufficient precision to ensure a successful solution, taking into account relevant scientific principles and potential impacts on people and the natural environment that may limit possible solutions.
    NGSS3-5-ETS1-1
    Define a simple design problem reflecting a need or a want that includes specified criteria for success and constraints on materials, time, or cost.
    NGSSMS-ETS1-4
    Develop a model to generate data for iterative testing and modification of a proposed object, tool, or process such that an optimal design can be achieved.

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