More of Our Playground Ideas

We have come to the last week of term and the final sharing about our playground investigations. The 5/6 and 4/5 classes have completed their double page spreads and their book is done. Each section shares the idea that a pair of students worked on as a suggestion to solve one of the two problems their class worked on.

Possible problems
Here is the list of possible problems that our 6 classes are now working on.

When publishing their work each group needed to think about the content and the layout of the page so that their readers will clearly understand each idea. By using Book Creator the groups were also able to add audio to their page to add more information.

Read our Book
Follow the picture link to read about the ideas for our playground by the 5/6 and 4/5 classes.
What do you think about the ideas dreamed up by our classes. Have they given you any good ideas. Please leave a comment sharing your thoughts.

Sharing Our Playground Improvement Ideas

All of the classes investigating our big question – “Does our playground meet our needs?” – have been working hard to come up with a solution to the problems chosen for their class.

Possible problems
Here is the list of possible problems that our 6 classes are now working on.

Students worked with a partner to created a double page spread sharing the final idea that they explored with our design process planning sheet. By doing this this they have come to the last stage of the design process we have been learning about – Share.

image of the design process - ask, imagine, plan, create, improve, share

Time constraints and a planned excursion to explore some nearby playgrounds has limited the time that our grade 3/4 classes had to spend on the improve section of the design process but everyone has been able to share their ideas in a book created using the Book Creator app. The other four classes are still working on their ideas and will share their book in another blog post.

Mrs S has shared the book online so that our classes can share our ideas with other classes, teachers, parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, carers, sisters, brothers and any one else who may be interested in seeing their creative ideas.

Read our Book
Click on the cover of our book to read about our ideas.
What do you think about the ideas dreamed up by Grade 3/4 B and Grade 3/4 Y. Have they given you any good ideas. Please leave a comment sharing your thoughts.

Continuing our Playground Inquiry….

After adding all of our dots to our satellite image the classes worked with a partner and in whole groups to come up with some survey questions that would give us some more information about our needs in our playground. Mrs S collated these and looked for the commonalities between each class to create an online survey for all the classes to complete.

Survey title and number of responses

During the time each class spends with Mrs S and their class teacher students completed the survey. It was very interesting to see the results automatically update as each student submitted their answers. Our classes all saw how efficient it was to use an online survey tool that collated the results as they were entered and created graphs of the data.

The survey data added more information about where students like to play and also what they like to do outside.

graph of favourite places

We found out that our oval is the most popular play area and the second most popular spot is our netball courts. There are quite a number of students who would still like to be able to play in the junior playground. Some of these students like the sheltered areas that are there and other would like to play with brothers and sisters.

After talking about our results it was time for each group to try and identify some playground problems. Mrs S and our teachers reminded us that we were searching for solvable problems. We found that some problems were people problems, others were space problems, some were safety problems and some were more to do with dreaming of changes we could make to our outside play area.

After working with all 6 classes Mrs S was able to come up with a list of eight ideas. Each class narrowed this down to two and are now focused on imagining clever solutions.

Possible problems
Here is the list of possible problems that our 6 classes are now working on.

We will be trying to persuade others about our ideas by creating a presentation that describes the solution we have imagined for each problem.

Which problem would you choose? How would you solve it? Please leave a comment sharing your thoughts.

Investigating an inquiry question…

By Javid44 [CC BY-SA 4.0 ], from Wikimedia Commons




This term we have started to explore an inquiry question. Using the design process we are asking questions and collecting data to find out if there are any problems that we might be able to create a solution to help solve.

Our big question seems simple but when we started to think carefully each class found that it led to many more questions and the need to do some research and collect some data.

Does Our Playground Meet Our Needs?

As part of our data collection Mrs S put up a large satellite image map of our playground and each class was invited to add their data. Each class was asked the same two questions.

  • Where do you love to play in our playground?
  • Is there anywhere you do not like to play? Where?

Every student was given 3 yellow smiley face stickers and 3 red frowning face stickers so that they could add them to the large image. After having time to explore a colour satellite image from Google Earth everyone was able to add their dots to the map. You did not have to use all 6 stickers. We were collecting visual data about where we like to play.

After each class had added their dots Mrs S took a photograph so that we were able to see how our data changed over time.

dots after one class

dots after 2 classes

dots after 3 classes

dots after 4 classes

dots after 5 classes

dots after 6 classes

Some of the areas in our playground became so covered with dots that there was a slight mound when you carefully touched the map. Layers of dots covered the ones underneath.

What questions do you have about our collected data? Are you wondering why each dot was placed in a certain place?

Please leave a comment sharing any questions you might have.

Working with the Design Process

This year our classes have been exploring the design process. Architects, engineers, scientists and students can use the design process to help solve problems. These problems may be small, big, imaginary or real and in each case the design process helps break down the problem into smaller steps.

image of the design process - ask, imagine, plan, create, improve, share

Students had two challenges to complete and learned more about the steps in the design process as they completed these challenges.

Challenge one used only one building material and asked students to design a safe but tall structure for a little plastic bear to be able to see better in the classroom. We named all the bears – Harry.

In our second challenge there were more materials to choose from and the challenge had changed slightly. Harry still needed a safe, tall tower but there also needed to be a way of going up and down. The size of the groups building together also were larger.

Can you see the extra materials we had? Can you see some ways of getting up and down? Please leave a comment to tell us what you can see.