Fifth graders bring ‘STEM Monster’ to life
Posted at 12:19 pm Tuesday November 1, 2022
The fifth-grade math and science classes at Lady Queen of Heaven School have created an annual Halloween STEM monster.
This STEM activity is part of the Global Monster Project, created by Terry Smith. Smith is a group leader within the National Geographic Educator Certification Program, as well as an educator.
Smith said the project is a collaboration between primary classes around the world. To participate in the project, schools choose one part of the body to describe it in 12 to 20 words. After submitting descriptions to the Global Monster Project, each school creates a monster based on everyone’s descriptions. OLQHS have chosen the “belly button” as part of their body.
Sixty-eight students collaborated to create the monster, which they named “Bill Nye the Man of Science.” Each student played their own role and chose the materials used to create the monster. Students were encouraged to use recyclable materials.
Brenna LeBert, a fifth grade math and science teacher at OLQHS, said the project gives upper elementary students the opportunity to showcase their creativity and gain STEM skills.
“This project allows students to get creative to design and build their own monster parts. They have to use specific measurements and specific instructions,” she said. “I offer guidance but they take their own direction when it comes to building.”
She said that the basic construction of the monster was the biggest challenge. ”
The main part of STEM comes when we work together to put all the pieces into a standing monster. “They figured out how to attach the different parts. This group of students came together to make our monster stand on its own. They also created a way that the head could be attached without constantly falling.”
Monster creation doesn’t stop when you build it; Students also choose a human issue to associate with the monster.
“When each school decides to participate in Project Monster, it has to choose from a list of sustainable development goals in which its monster will help society,” she said. “Our class chose the health and well-being of our community. We chose this because our fifth class has a garden that we plant every year.”
Classes have gone so far to create a sustainable job to create.
“The students decided that our monster, if real, would help us grow vegetables and distribute them to the surrounding community to promote health and well-being.”
Lippert said this project was a successful exploration of construction, engineering, and teamwork for fifth graders.
“We plan to be involved in this for years to come,” she said. “This is a fun way to get kids excited about creating and building parts.”