4th Grade

STEM

Today’s fourth graders were born around the same time that Apple first released the iPhone.

In addition to reading, writing and arithmetic, today’s students need to learn how to create digital products, not just consume them.  Coding introduces kids to the process of computational thinking, in which students break a problem down and express a solution in steps that a computer can understand.

As these children grow, the ability to code will become as critical a part of their success as reading and arithmetic were to ours (and our parents).  No matter what field they choose, computers will be part of their work and daily life, and they will find themselves more capable and independent if they understand how computers work.

With MacBook Pro laptops, iPads, Google Drive, and G Suite for Education, fourth graders have a robust suite of hardware and software to help them with regular coding assignments.  They learn about the internet and how to navigate it safely and responsibly, establishing the basics of good digital citizenship.  They also participate in The Hour of Code, a global movement that gets kids coding and collaborating, nurturing their creativity, problem-solving abilities, and team sense.

They use Lego Simple and Powered Machines base sets to tackle design and engineering challenges.  Working in teams, each child takes responsibility for designing (and re-designing) part of a model and giving and receiving feedback to teammates to create the strongest possible final product.  This hones not only their design and engineering skills, but their abilities to communicate and collaborate, which are critical for 21st-century success.  And in addition to class work, they have access to Moses Brown’s 5,000-square foot Y-lab, a maker space open to everyone in the Moses Brown community that serves as a home for tinkerers, inventors, and entrepreneurs of any age.

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Engineering Challenge

Working on the Marshmallow Challenge

Upper school engineering students, fourth grade science students, and a small group of faculty and staff recently took part in a combined Marshmallow Challenge in the Lower School.

Faculty

Erika McEnery

Lower School Technology

About

Erika McEnery

University of Vermont – B.S.
Lesley University – M.Ed.

David Husted ’86

Director of Innovation and Design

About

David Husted ’86

Roger Williams University – B.S.
Harvard Graduate School of Education – Ed.M.

Robert Pike

Lower School Fourth Grade

About

Robert Pike

Hull University – B.A.
Lesley University – M.Ed.

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