One photograph can be the jumping off point for an authentic project. What was this? Who built it? When? Why? What happened to it? (history/research – reading)
Where was this photo taken? (geography) What clues are in the photo to help you figure this out? (botany/geology)
Design and build a model of what you think this structure was. (math) Creative writing story starter? (writing)…
With all the fancy Fitbit, Garmin, Google, Amazon, etc., smart watches out there, I thought it might be a cool authentic project for students to design their own devices.
This idea came to me on an airline flight when my husband was obsessing over the fact that his Garmin watch was calculating altitude by air pressure rather than GPS. As the plane was pressurized (this is a good thing), his watch was reporting altitude by air pressure inside the plane, rather than the altitude the plane was at. I am sure there are many further examples like this that older students could research, learn about, and maybe even figure out a “fix.” They could also design their own devices with all the capabilities that they would like.
For younger students this could be more of a fun “imagineering” (thanks Disney for that word) project where they design watches with all of the capabilities that they would want. They could also research what is available, what they could like to add, and create their dream smart watch. This could also include some authentic practice in telling time. (Listen for the opportunity and work that skill in.)
*I would like mine to be able to, with the press of a button, bring down the temperature of any room to a lovely 69 degrees! Oh, and instantly connect to Amazon for shopping. And give me “step” credits for said shopping. And how about a map directing me to where my favorite television star is hiding (hint – he is Scottish and gorgeous). And…gosh I may have to do some research and complete this project myself!