New Initiatives Grant Final Report

“Engineering in a Novel Way”

Please provide a brief narrative explaining your project and its outcomes.

For this project we had two school librarians from different districts come together and help us write and plan three lessons per grade level (K-6) that included STEM or STEAM activities integrated with literacy and research. The librarians collaborated to identify age appropriate titles and aligned mini STEAM projects and mini research projects to each title at each grade level. We were able to accomplish all of these lessons and will not integrate them into the school library curriculum. We also identified and/or created all materials that would be needed to complete these activities (aside from consumables) to be purchased. Lessons and materials were assembled into kits that can be loaned out to schools. Obstacles included time and planning without having all of the materials in front of us to test activities. A constraint was that for the research we needed to suggest/incorporate databases and titles that all elementary schools could access, so NOVELNY resources were the primary databases used.

What is the most remarkable accomplishment or finding of your project?

School Librarians are VERY excited about these kits and lessons. Also, there are an increasing number of websites out there that can help suggest ideas and related activities but many or most do not include a research component, so these lessons and activities set ours apart from the rest.

Please provide a brief summary of your evaluation activities and/or results, if available.

After lessons were written and kits were assembled, we had a training for K-6 school librarians regarding our curriculum and focusing half a day on the Engineering in a Novel Way kits. The librarians were able to see each title, look through the lessons, and quickly test out the steam activity. Feedback was provided by the librarians and adjustments were made as a result.

Anything else you’d like us to know?

This grant helped us fill a need that a number of our school librarians had identified. People were eager to help and eager to dive in and check it all out. Thank you very much!

Janice Murray

Instructional Support Specialist, OHM BOCES SLS/Media

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