These creative construction projects happen every week in Mrs. Kammeraad’s Page Elementary classroom. “The kids love it and it’s a great start to their day. They get to see their creativity come to life,” said Kammeraad.
“I like figuring out how to make things,” said Grady Bowman who said he has a collection of Legos he’s built at home already and likes the chance to build things at school.
While some students have something specific in mind when they start building, others simply put pieces together and see where their creativity leads them. Bristal Schnell held up her Brain Flakes creation and eyed it carefully before deciding it looked like a flower.
“I like doing this because you can make whatever you want and you can get really creative. Sometimes I don’t know what I’m building, I just start putting pieces together,” said Schnell.
Each week, students select one thing to do from their weekly choice board. One of the favorite options is building with the Brain Flakes, Straw Constructors, Clip Connects and Magna-Tiles.
After students make their creations, they draw a picture of what they’ve built and add more details - like Landon Lambitz’s Titanic ship sinking into the sea with passengers falling into the water, or Daniela Sanchez’s Disney World water park ride with blue splashing water surrounding a raft. Kammeraad said she loves seeing the creativity of each student and how they problem-solve when they run into an issue with their design.
Lexi Filipiak had to use some engineering skills to add more Straw Connectors to stabilize the base of her basketball hoop. It kept toppling over when she tossed her handmade basketball into the hoop. “It works,” she said as the basketball landed through the hoop without knocking it over.
Marshall Syswerda said he’s made boats, castles and trains. He even built the Twin Towers. “I just like to build things and I try to build different things every week. Sometimes you have to start over if it doesn’t work right the first time.”
“It’s fun because you don’t have to build it perfect and you get to create what you want to make,” said Peyton Shepherd who built a boat using the Brain Flakes.
Kammeraad said she’s impressed with the ingenuity and imagination of her students. “Elementary kids are so creative and we don’t always have the space in the day to allow them to explore that creativity. This time also shows them they can have independence and make something that’s their choice.”
Kai Carpenter ended up with a fox, a football and a football target all made out of the Straw Constructors. “That’s why I like this stuff. You can make anything you want. I just start building and see what happens. I love it.”