Christine is an elementary school science teacher from Maryland participating in EdLab's Classroom 2.0 Project. Over the course of this school year, EdLab will be partnering with exceptional educators in DC, Maryland, and Virginia. These teachers will implement mission-based learning plans, originally created during the Summer 2011 workshops, with their students and share their projects and results here on the EdLab website.
Last Friday, the fourth grade was transported to an imaginary town along the Chesapeake Bay where the citizens were presented with a difficult decision, to build or not to build. The scenario: A large plot of land was given to the town by long time resident, Mrs. Lee. Bay Building Incorporated has proposed to build a boardwalk on her land. The boardwalk will include carnival rides, arcades and food stands. There will be a town meeting on January 24, 2012, at 9 am. Concerned citizens have been invited to present their support or concerns for the project at that time.
Each student took on a role within the community of Bayville. The student citizen roles included marine scientists, restaurant owners, investors, teachers and parents. After three months of studying about the plants, animals, water quality, ecosystems, watersheds, economics and the human impacts on the bay during their science, social studies and technology classes, the students were ready to tackle this real world problem - should the citizens of Bayville build a boardwalk along the Bay or keep the Bay as is? Students formed into self-appointed small groups to begin working on digital presentations to be showcased later this month at a “town meeting.” The students decided as a class that their presentations should include facts that support their perspective, images and video.