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Winter STEM Challenge: Snowman Stretch

Grade Levels
2nd - 8th
Formats Included
  • Zip
Pages
30 pages
$3.98
$3.98
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Description

This Winter STEM Challenge works well with social distancing and distance learning environments because the materials are incredibly simple and accessible! I even created this video to give you some ideas & options to make it work, whatever your situation!

HEADS UP: THIS PRINT VERSION & THE PAPERLESS VERSION ARE HALF-OFF JAN. 3-4.

The basic premise:

Working against a criteria/constraints list individually or in partners/groups, students will design and build the tallest free-standing snowman possible. (Option 2: Students design and build a snowman of greatest volume possible.)

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Note: This is the printable version. If you are in a 1:1 / paperless classroom, you will want to check out the digital option for use with GOOGLE SLIDES (TM) instead.

If you have questions about which version is right for you, please feel free to leave me a question using the product Q&A below.

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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 (color and black & white; editable version provided)
  • Design Analysis Handouts (2-page regular spacing and 4-page expanded spacing for primary students included) (color and black & white; editable)
  • Discussion Questions (in color and B&W; editable)

Extension templates

- Design an Experiment for Melting Ice (walks students through the steps of the scientific method to design an experiment to melt ice. Editable and sample answer key included.)

- Observation handouts for melting ice experiment (editable)

- Process Flow Map

- Math Extension

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This is one of five Winter / Christmas STEM Challenges. They can be purchased in a bundle at a 40% discount:

Winter_Christmas 5-in-1 STEM Challenge Bundle (2nd – 8th)

This resource is also available in the STEM CHALLENGE YEAR-ROUND MEGA-BUNDLE at an even greater discount!

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Sample/suggested materials for each student or group:

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

• Bag of cotton balls and/or 3 pieces of tissue paper and/or 5 sheets of copy paper

• Straws (5 – 10)

• Pipe cleaners (5 – 10)

• Tape (24 in.)

• Scissors

• Ruler or measuring tape

• Copies of data recording & analyzing handouts

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Benefits of this STEM Design Challenge:

- Focus on critical thinking, problem solving, and application of learning

- Helps students develop growth mindset traits like persistence and resilience

- High levels of student engagement

- The potential to hit upon all NGSS ETS standards depending on the depth and number of iterations you choose to implement in your classroom (modifications included)

- Highly flexible and differentiated for materials, timing, grade levels, and rigor.

Each design iteration should be planned for ~60 min. if you are including data gathering and analysis rather than just building for fun. If you add extension activities, you will need to adjust timing accordingly.

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What do teachers have to say about this resource?

“We used this at our Frozen: Making science cool family STEM Night and our families loved it. Some of them got really into it and it was nice to see how many creative possibilities there were.”

“My GT students really enjoyed this activity. I used it as a challenge on the first day back from the holidays. Great ideas for differentiation, also. Thanks.”

“This was a great "last day of school before Christmas break" activity. Thank you the students had a great deal of fun and used a great deal of creativity!”

“This was an easy to set up STEM activity that my students loved!”

“This was an easy to set up STEM activity that my students loved!”

“Great unit. Mind stretching.”

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You might also like these resources:

STEM Challenges & Bundles (grades 2 – 8):

STEM CHALLENGE YEAR-ROUND MEGA-BUNDLE

Christmas/Winter STEM Design Challenge: 5-in-1 Bundle

Snow Scoop

Frosted Forest

Thanksgiving STEM Challenge 5-in-1 Bundle

Valentine’s Day STEM Challenge 5-in-1 Bundle

Analyze and Interpret Data Unit

Getting Started with STEM Challenges FREEBIE

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Please check out the video preview to see the challenge, and don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions!

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Video preview music credit:

"Carefree" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)

Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Total Pages
30 pages
Answer Key
N/A
Teaching Duration
90 minutes
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