This upcoming school year, I have decided that I want to provide my students with the opportunity to become inventors. Using the Makey Makey Kit, students will work in pairs or groups of three (depending on how many resources I have available) to create a video game controller. I want the project to engage the students through exploration and trial and error. This made me think: how can I relate this to school content? I thought about all of our first grade standards and what my students could use some work on…informational writing. Last year, it was very difficult for my kids to not use opinions in their informational writing. I thought this project would be a great opportunity to work on that standard. That being said, my goal is for my students to create a working video game controller (using any objects of their choice) and create a “How-to Use a Makey Makey” informational guide (digital if they choose) for other students/classes to learn from.
I know that sounds incredibly complicated for six/seven year olds in a first grade environment. However, I hold my students to very high standards and I want them to know that. This project seems like a great opportunity to push them to be the best they can be and to do something amazing that they will take pride in.
So, here is my prototype:
Students will be provided with materials that may or may not conduct electricity–they will also have the opportunity to bring in objects from home if they please. They will have to go through trial and error to figure out what objects will work with the Makey Makey board.
Students will then pick a video game (potential website to pick from) and create a video game controller using objects of their choice.
Throughout the Makey Makey learning process, students will collaboratively create a “How to” guide for their Makey Makey Kit (digital or not–again, I want it to be their choice and I also want to see what resources I will have). Ideally, they will share this with other students/classes within the district and potentially beyond that (that would be really cool)!