Are You Ready for a Great Book? (The Best of 2018)

Are you constantly looking for the next great read? I always have several books lined up to read and can't wait to get started on some of them. Some of them I do not want to finish because I love them so much and sometimes I just throw a book down because I do not like it.

The ones I loved the most in 2018 are featured in this post. These books are the ones you definitely should read! 


Rescue Me! A Challenge with Two Teams

The very first STEM Challenge we tried in fifth grade was a real-life dilemma. My idea was that a student group was camping in a desert and needed to elevate their food while they slept. They could only build the elevation device using the materials in their camping gear.

It was fun and certainly a learning experience. And it led to more real-life challenges because we loved the scenario of solving a problem that we might face one day.

Our Rescue Device Challenge was another real-life event that we loved! This challenge also has a very interesting twist!


An Unbelievable Adventure with Newton's Cradles

If you have ever had a Newton's Cradle in your classroom then you will totally understand the fascination with this STEM Challenge! Kids absolutely love to watch a Newton's Cradle clack endlessly together.

I promise the first time we tried this challenge my fifth graders actually cheered when I announced what we were doing.

It's the Famous Newton's Cradle Challenge!

This is the best STEM Challenge for your upper elementary students. Check this post full of tips about trying the resource- Build a Newton's Cradle!


How We Accidentally Created a Bucket Tower Challenge

This is going to be hard to believe, but some of our best STEM Challenges have been created by accident.

Building boats was one such total spur-of-the-moment challenge. I literally came to school one morning and started going through cabinets to pull out materials I thought kids would want to use to build a boat. They loved this activity so much and it's still one of favorites.

Bucket Towers is another great example of an "accidental" challenge.

This is a STEM Challenge all about a tower with a unique feature. We call these Bucket Towers and it's a favorite challenge for a reason. It involves some great problem solving and the design must also include a reason a tower would need a bucket! Check this post for more!

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