AR + K-PREP = FUN in SCIENCE!
George Rogers Clark High School STLP
Service Team Blogger Corps Project
Oh, the dreadful K-PREP testing! From third grade up until sixth grade, students experience the week long state testing, called K-PREP (Kentucky Performance Rating for Educational Progress). This test will determine mastery of skills in the subjects of math, science, English, social studies, and writing. The students are rated with distinguished, proficient, apprentice, or novice in each subject depending on the number of correct answers given.
Bourbon County schools have experienced some struggles specifically from a local elementary school with fifth and sixth graders. This particular school had a proficiency average of 23.3% for the science portion of the test, compared to 31.7% average proficiency statewide. A group of middle school students decided to help the elementary school students with this problem. Trya, Aiden, Kaden, and Taylor investigated this issue and plotted a plan to improve scores for the students for their STLP project.
First and foremost, the middle schoolers met with the head of the math and science departments to decide what lessons the kids struggled with the most. According to the teachers from the elementary school, the earth and solar systems were the hardest for them to comprehend. From experience, the middle schools students understood that most fifth and sixth graders learn best through visuals. Therefore, with the use of technology such as the Scratch-Block program and a Makey-Makey, the students created an augmented reality lesson for the kids. During this AR lesson, outer space is projected onto a wooden platform with a circular, wooden cutout of the moon. The cutout of the moon has tin foil on the bottom used as a conductor to the Makey-Makey. Once the current is formed between the tin foil and the Makey-Makey, it can be connected to the Scratch-Board program that allows the projection of the moon phases to change once the moon cutout is physically moved around the earth on the wooden platform. Once the model was built and successfully showed the phases of the moon, the middle schoolers set up dates to meet with the elementary schoolers to show the model.
The group of students continually meet with elementary schoolers in hopes that their K-PREP science scores will increase in May. From working with these same elementary students last year this project saw some success from 2018-19 with an increase of 17% on the science portion of the K-PREP test. This amazing group of students were able to impact their school district's elementary state testing within one year! Due to their success, they plan to use the same technology and advance to the lesson on the season changes. Four kids, a need for younger students' academic improvement, and technology can make a world of difference!