Buffalo Elementary School in Davenport Iowa shared this fantastic video about their new SmartLab. The Buffalo Elementary STEAM lab is our first SmartLab in Iowa!
Thanks for sharing this video and welcome to the SmartLab family!!
Today’s learners live in a video world. They are active
consumers, producers and critics of video content. How do we leverage this fact
to deepen interest and understanding in STEM?
Video-based instructional media provides an incremental
improvement over text-based content but does little to build engagement and
relevance. The real power of video lies in its potential for project-based
By the time many students enter middle school, they are
adept at filming, editing and publishing video content. Today’s smartphones and
pocket cameras are all capable of producing high resolution video. Free editing
applications are widely available for both computers and mobile devices. When we
promote the use video to document learning, we elevate traditional tests,
essays and PowerPoint presentations to a rich, relevant format.
Sun Cho and David Bang, students at the Dipaoli Middle
School SmartLab in Reno, NV provided us with a great example. In producing the
video animation below, Sun and David demonstrate clear mastery of a complex
scientific concept, DNA transcription and translation. Moreover, the process of
making the video reinforced these concepts and required a far deeper understanding
than would be necessary for more traditional methods of assessment. The
popularity and ease of sharing videos on social media like YouTube provides
additional relevance and motivation for learning.
Video projects also satisfy Next Generation Science Standards,
which emphasize deeper understanding of science concepts over memorization of a
wide range of facts. While video projects can be more time consuming than other
methods of documentation and assessment, it’s a powerful tool to engage today’s
learners in STEM.
Every summer, the Advanced Facilitator Development Conference is one of the highlights of our year. This new video is great glimpse into this exciting and enriching conference!