By Juliann Riggin, MHS Independent Study in Journalism Student
Everyone loves a good selfie with friends, but now sixth graders at Woodgate Intermediate School will be taking a different kind of picture- a “Cell-fie!”
Science teachers Jennifer Stanley, Linda Peebles, and Marc Almond were recently awarded a grant for $696 to buy a DJI Spark Portable Mine Drone Quadcopter, which they plan to use as a creative way to teach cell structures in class.
“We would use the drone to help them understand cell structure by making a large scale model and then zoom in and out to show individual cell parts,” Stanley said in the application for the grant. “The activity would create an engaging atmosphere while learning the difference between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells.”
The grant, named in honor of Brian Townley, Class of ’88, will help the 325 students in sixth grade science to better understand a complicated concept using the real world technology that they’re used to. Students will play a part in creating a “larger than life” replica of cells. Using the bird’s eye view of the cells they have created, student will see a different view of the figures they have created. Stanley plans to measure how well the students understand the concept by transferring the images from the drone to the classroom, where students can showcase what they’ve learned by creating slide shows and videos.
After using the drone, students felt like they understood the cell structure better. Hailee Perry, who played the role of the cell nucleus, said that it helped them learn to work together in a group, and Jade Washington described it as a “challenging but fun way” to help them learn about cells.
Stanley was overall satisfied with the drone. She believed that it really helped the kids to become engaged and have fun while learning, and she plans to continue utilizing the drone in the future.
This grant was provided as a Grant Express award through the Midway ISD Education Foundation and named in honor of Brian Townley in appreciation for his generous support of the Education Foundation. To learn more about how you can help provide creative innovative classroom grants for Midway students, visit our web page at www.midwayisd.org/foundation.