A STEAMy week in First Grade

What a sensational week we had in First grade last week!

Gravity and Sir Isaac Newton’s 3 laws of motion were the theme of our jam-packed week.

The highlight of the week was a special visit from my dear friend Janna Kaplan. She presented a IMG_7437marvelous lesson based on her determination to be an astronaut even though she was female and a Russian Jewish Refusenick. Her life story is fascinating and the work she does as the head of the Zero Gravity Laboratory at Brandeis is inspirational. She was very impressed with our students and asked me to post this:

The kids were beyond amazing. I’m not just saying it because they were cute (they are!). The level of their knowledge and understanding of spaceflight was definitely above grade level! The discussions we had during my presentation, the quality of their questions, and just the avalanche of questions they “pelleted” me with, were all unmistakable signs of that. So were their genuine interest in spaceflight and their ability to sustain attention during a fairly long event (I think it lasted more than one hour!). At the end of the lecture, I want you to know how deeply impressed I was. As a parent myself of (now adult) Jewish day school kids, I know how important it is for parents to know that their kids are actively interested in topics of science and exploration. It is from those curious children that we get our best scientists.

CheIMG_7408ck out some of the amazing photos from last week, when we also celebrated 100 days of school and tested out the 3 laws of motion by attempting to make marble runs from plastic tubing and marbles…..


IMG_7409 IMG_7411




We celebrated 100 days of School last week with an assortment of hands-on activities!


We made 100 bead necklaces…


and found out what does 100 drops of water looks like…


and the number 100 popped up in a note about kindness!






Our STEAM RISD/Brown Liaison, Anthony gave a fantastic workshop about animals adaptations that amplified oIMG_7440ne of the senses.

IMG_7441Above is a STEAM-inspired Lego creation.