It’s the middle of both Walk to School Week and National Walking Month so clearly walking is essential to maintain physical health as well as to improve focus and concentration once students make it to school. It’s a great time to incorporate simple STEM activities to engage your students in learning and walking.
Walking is a great way to develop understanding of data and statistics. Students need to know how data collected can answer questions such as –
- What is the average number of steps I walk to school?
- What is the average number of steps I walk to my home?
- What is the average amount of time it takes me to walk to school?
- What is my rate of walking?
- What is the average difference in my heart rate before I start walking to school and after I have reached school?
The last question can be answered using a simple-to-use mini science lab called Labdisc. The Labdisc portable STEM lab is a wireless, battery-operated compact data logger with 15 built-in calibrated sensors. It is a great exploration tool for conducting experiments anywhere, including outside of the classroom. The Labdisc comes with a library of lessons for all ages and levels, including one called Right on Target where heart rate is recorded before and after exercise to determine target heart rate. The lesson is thorough in explaining ‘exercise intensity’ and how it relates to target heart rate.
Another lesson is Our Heart Rate by MyStemKits. MyStemKits curriculum is designed to help teachers incorporate more STEM instruction without a steep learning curve. Many of the lessons can be paired with a 3D printer to create manipulatives so that students can experience hands-on learning that is fun and engaging. The Our Heart Rate lesson combines the MyStemKits Human Body Kit with the Labdisc heart rate sensor. Students will learn how the heart functions and adapts to different behaviors such as walking! Change the pace of the walk for different data and evaluate the results as a class.
Another lesson focused on science and technology is A Walk Through the City. Students will study the relationship between temperature and humidity in several locations inside and outside of school. Data on relative humidity will be collected and discussed, with the aim to obtain the values of these variables in urban spaces and in green areas. This lesson can also be used as part of a unit using the Urban Ecology Kit where students can investigate ways to improve ecosystems, temperatures, and energy efficiency in cities.
Encourage your students to walk to school and learn using simple activities to spark more interest in STEM-related topics. Oh, and have fun walking!
For more information on Boxlight STEM solutions such as MyStemKits curriculum and Labdisc portable science labs, go to global.boxlight.com > STEM.