Review of STEM Activities, Full Year of Challenges with Close Reading

Is it difficult to fit challenging STEM activities into your school day? Tied 2 Teaching offers a wide variety of challenges through their STEM Activities, Full Year of Challenges with Close Reading.

For this review, our family received a digital copy of the STEM Activities, Full Year of challenges with Close Reading.

The STEM Activities give students a chance to use their different learning styles to experience success.

What Are the STEM Activities, Full Year of Challenges with Close Reading?

These STEM activity challenges are so much fun! With the Full Year STEM Bundle, you receive more than 70 Design Challenge Packages along with the accompanying Close Reading passages. Tied 2 Teaching has provided a way to integrate STEM challenges into your school day. They added science, technology, engineering, and mathematics tasks in a hands-on experience.

The STEM Activities are designed for grades 3 through 6. The lessons are written to be flexible, so I was able to engage my 2nd grader easily. Even my high school son wanted to try some out. Since students are encouraged to meet the challenge using their individual sills and talents, a wide range of ages can participate and work at their personal level.

There are a wide variety of challenges to spark the imagination and creativity. You can complete monthly themed projects or choose ones that your child is interested. There are 4 monthly packets for each month, Building Block Challenges, and Additional STEM Challenges. Topics include: Build a Dinosaur, Design a Cactus Paperweight, Build a Treasure Chest, Candy Heart Tower, 100th Day of School Crayon Tower, and Design a New Bug. Sounds fun, right? And they really are!

What is included in the STEM Activities form Tied 2 Teaching?

Each challenge is themed. The passage about dinosaurs is paired with a design challenge to create your own dinosaur. Each reading passage includes comprehension questions. There is a QR code link on the comprehension questions page that takes you to the reading passage online. There is also a link provided so you can go to the reading passage without the QR code as well. It was easier for me to follow the online link and print the pages as a PDF.

Each design challenge packet has several choices of worksheets to guide students through their thought process when designing, creating, and evaluating their projects. This is helpful because they appeal to different learning styles and ages. Following the building, they are able to evaluate their creation to see if it meets the challenge requirements. Then, they can think of ways to make it even better. How fun is that?

The challenges are fun and leave a lot of room for a student’s creativity and unique designs. There are suggested materials to gather from around the house, then kids can use these materials anyway they would like to in order to complete the challenge.

How did our family use the STEM Activities, Full Year of Challenges with Close Reading?

The design challenges were a ton of fun! My boys were completely excited to have this type of task. They definitely rose to the challenge and were very proud of the finished product.

Using materials you can find around your house, the STEM activities to do take a lot of preparation. My sons can pull everything they need together by themselves.

The design challenges can be done with a partner or individually. My boys decided they wanted to work next to each other, but complete their own projects. I was able to use the same curriculum for the wide age range between my boys. It was really fun for them to compare their unique designs.

Some of the STEM Challenges are themed monthly. We completed a Sled Design, Valentine’s Day, and Easter Bunny challenges. But that was not enough for my boys! They had so much fun, so they each chose some Additional Challenges and Building Block Challenges. They completed at least one challenge each week. Often, they took on two or three since they were so enjoyable.

If you are going to use the QR code, you need to download the QR code app. The link then takes to you the Wonderopolis website where you can read the passage. It is supposed to be a CLOZE reading passage, which means words are left out of the passage and kids refer to a word box to select the appropriate word for the sentence. I couldn’t figure out how to view the passage with the words missing. Everything I tried left the words in the passage, but underlined or highlighted them. So I printed it as a PDF and used it as a passage to be read aloud. I contacted Tied 2 Teaching, but they were not able to help me figure this out.

The passages were difficult for my 3rd grade reader, so I read the passage to him and he answered the comprehension questions. My 6th grade reader breezed through the passage and questions. So I would guess the reading level to be about 5th grade.

The questions focused mainly on detail/information gathering questions. There is a question about identifying the main idea. The comprehension questions lacked evaluation questions, where students are asked to use the information they learn through reading and apply it to another situation. But the STEM activity can serve that purpose as they are asked to imagine, design, test, and evaluate their challenges.

After completing a design challenge activity, students are asked to evaluate their design and decide if anything could be improved. I, as a parent, especially liked this question. Improvement was encouraged in a positive way.

I love to have a project for my 2nd grader to work on when I am focusing on helping his older brothers. These STEM Activities have been wonderful. He is excited to gather his materials, listen to the passages, and jump into building.

My 6th grade son has an engineering mind that thrives on solving problems. The STEM Activities, Full Year of Challenges with Close Reading definitely improved our curriculum!

Where can you find this resource from Tied 2 Teaching?

You can find more information about this and other resources at their website or at these social media links:

 

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STEM Activities, Full Year of Challenges with Close Reading {Tied 2 Teaching Reviews}

Disclaimer

I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations.

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