Christine Wright

5th Grade Teacher (San Juan Diego Academy, MI) 

5th Graders Choose to Save Earth or Colonize Mars

What did your students learn from your Blue Apple project?

My students learned about Mars and Earth. They learned how to make commercials, and they used those commercials to convince people to give to their causes. This project integrated all core subjects. They had a journal to write in, data to keep track of, reading, researching, higher level thinking, collaborating with peers, and presentations.

How did Blue Apple promote curiosity in your students?

When they planted the seeds, they were curious, they couldn’t wait until the next day to see how their plants were growing….And then when they were researching, they were excited when they found out the largest mountain in the solar system is on Mars. Whenever they found new information, they wanted to know more. One student said, “There were so many things that kept me curious, like the mystery box, the commercials, and growing plants.”

How did Blue Apple support student engagement?

There were many hands-on activities that kept my students engaged! The students had a wonderful time collaborating and researching together and then when we got to the part with the commercials, there was just no stopping them.

How did Blue Apple give students opportunities to be creative?

In many ways they had to be creative: by trying to make the Mars soil similar to Earth soil, or creating their own commercials, or deciding where they wanted to live and why, or making posters of the mountain on Mars.

What did you think of the lesson plans in Blue Apple?

The lesson plans were very easy to follow and gave plenty of information. There were many links for me to check out. They also had many different options and extensions for me to make it my own.

What additional insights from your Blue Apple project can you apply to the rest of your teaching?

It is always hard to include reflecting on student thoughts or findings. This project helped me see the benefits as they wrote in their journals.

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