Elementary Science Gets an Update in APS

Story Submitted by Kevin Riebau
APS Learning Resources Director

Aurora Public Schools elementary students will be getting new and improved hands-on experiences with science this school year.

This is certainly welcomed after a long period of remote learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

When asked what is exciting about the new science kits, Elementary Science Coordinator Ryann Patrick-Stuart said, “With our new resources we are shifting our science block to be more of a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) block to meet the demands of our new standards. There are two types of new units, one is a phenomenon based unit where throughout the unit students are studying big science ideas to make sense of a natural phenomena. For example, in 4th grade the entire unit is built around students making sense of why the 2014 landslide in Oso, Washington happened and then proposing ideas to the town council on how to prevent it from happening again. The other type of unit is an engineering unit where students take what they have learned in the phenomenon unit and apply it to solving an engineering design challenge. After the Oso Landslide unit, students then engage in a unit around designing earthquake resistant structures to mitigate natural geological events.”

In order to equip teachers and students with the new science kits, 500 kits had to be assembled by district staff before school started. The staff who worked tirelessly to get the job done for our students included: teachers Danitza Hill and Daisy Jacobs, Science Assessment and Instructional TOSA Jennifer Nassar, Learning Resources Technicians Glenda Fahey, Denise Hull, Debbie Brown, Warehouse Technicians Phil Graham, Adam Kane, Erik Govednik, James Hallez and Warehouse Coordinator Cory Gilmer.

Regarding the effort, APS Learning Resources Director Kevin Riebau said, “This was no small feat! The collaboration between all of our teams to bring these science resources to our students and teachers has been amazing. Hats off to all those who made this happen, job well done!”