Today, Chesnut’s fourth graders were among a select group of students from eight DeKalb county schools (and the only elementary students in the Dunwoody cluster) to meet the inspirational pilot and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) educator, Barrington Irving, as he landed his helicopter on the Dunwoody High School football field and disembarked with Superintendent Stephen Green.
At Chesnut, each of our grade levels has a STEM capstone – or area of concentration. For the 2015-16 school year, our fourth grade capstone will be The Flying Classroom, an interactive STEM learning adventure curriculum that is aligned to the National Common Core Standards and Next Generation Science Standards. In 2007, at the age of 23, Barrington Irving became the youngest person and the first black pilot to fly solo around the globe. On his 97-day journey, he flew 30,000 miles in a single-engine plane. He subsequently launched the Flying Classroom, and is traveling the continents and bringing his adventures to students via videos and blogs.
Since launching the Flying Classroom last year, his expeditions have ranged from learning how to build sustainable cities in Shanghai to diving expeditions to see the condition of coral reefs in Bali. There are no limits to the exciing adventures and challenges our fourth graders will experience in the Flying Classroom! How exciting for them to be able to meet Barrington Irving in person to hear about his expeditions and what inspired him to be involved in STEM!
Also in conjunction with today’s adventure, the students attended a STEM Expo, where they worked on mini-STEM activities ranging from 3-D holograms to robotics and storyboarding, and, during a “lunch and learn” they used the engineering design process to create straw rockets.
Led by parent volunteer Carissa Malone, with first grade teachers Ms. Radford and Ms. Skoog (a School Master Gardener), Chesnut students recently spent time in Chesnut Garden experiencing a hands-on science lesson on composting, planting and harvesting.
The students learned it’s never too early to get excited for the fall, as they harvested pumpkins, which they discovered had grown out of the compost into which somebody had thrown a rotten pumpkin last year. They also observed the sweet potato beds that many of them planted their last week of kindergarten. The sweet potatoes will be ready to harvest at the end of October, at which time they will return to Chesnut Garden to do the harvest. Finally, the students also were taught – through example – how lettuce goes to seed when it’s dying. The classes were given the flowering stock of the lettuce plant so that they could pick the seeds out of it and bring them back to Chesnut Garden to plant! More standards-based gardening lessons are in Chesnut students’ future, as Chesnut teachers will soon attend the Project Learning Garden workshop to kick off the school’s three-year collaboration with Captain Planet Foundation
Chesnut Charter Elementary School in DeKalb County has recently been selected for a Captain Planet Foundation Project Learning Garden grant. Captain Planet Foundation is an international environmental education foundation for youth. The three-year Project Learning Garden program gives schools strategies for building effective and long-lasting garden-based learning programs. Teachers at pilot schools are provided with professional development for every grade level, interdisciplinary curriculum aligned to state and national standards, lesson kits with supplies for hands-on learning, a schoolyard garden, fully-equipped mobile cooking cart, and a summer garden management intern.
2015-16 Classroom Supply Lists are now available!
The K-5 lists are identical to those that were available for pre-order through Staples’ SchoolKidz program.
If your child is in the Discovery program, please also bring:
- Discovery (The Discovery list was not available for pre-order through SchoolKidz. If you pre-ordered your supplies, and your child is in the Discovery program, you will need to purchase from this list. We apologize for any inconvenience.)
Please remember… the school Agenda can only be purchased from the Chesnut school store – it is available on Open House day.