Any recommendations where I can buy the “maker supplies” for https://curriculum.code.org/csp/unit1/2/ ? And how many do I need of each? Is there an alternative activity if I cannot get the supplies?
I just use what ever I have from my classroom closet. My box of stuff includes three different rolls of colored yarn, aluminum foil, copier paper, water based markers, blue tape, solo cups, rulers, dice, plastic linking blocks, little kids’ scissors, etc. If you are absolutely brand new in a sterile classroom, go see your department head for “classroom supplies”. The only thing the students need is creativity. They will use what you have.
I use supplies I pick up from the dollar store like construction paper, pipe cleaners, plates, cups and party favors. I set a $10 limit and it has been enough for 3 - 4 sections. Throughout the year, I scavenge random items to toss in the supply box. It can be done with more common classroom supplies like postits, copy paper and markers. Check if the art department has some supplies you can use.
Due time constraints, my co-teacher did something different. The class that had an assembly brainstormed as a class using one ‘set’ with a few pipe cleaners and 2 plates . They wrote down what they would do. In the other class, he cut out the time needed for the choosing of supplies by randomly assigning supplies to each group.
I am with @anmrobnott - I went to the dollar store and our local surplus store to find the items. I also looked at Walmart’s “party favors” area for kids where I found some small light up items and noise makers.
I would recommend for sure having some sort of mini-flashlight since that transitions to the next day’s activity. Since it is a truly binary device, it would be nice for a student to choose that.
Also, the first year I had a baggie for each table with all sorts of things in it (cups, light, noise makers, string, balls, slinkies, etc.) This year I dumpped all of that out into one bin and had students pick something from there.
I liked that way of doing it way better. With too many supplies, students kept adding things to their device (despite instructions not to). Having students pick out their item they want to use kept students more focused. At the TeacherCon, they have participants pick one device too from a box and it worked pretty well. Trying that in my classroom was also an improvement.
Bottom line, each pair/group gets something to use for their device. So, look at how many pairs/groups you have and then make sure you have enough materials for each group to have something. Even if the last few pairs/groups get paper and markers, that’s fine - students can be really creative!
Let us know how it goes!!
I raided my (personal) kids’ toys: we had Lego, KNex, a few flashlights/finger flashlights, post-its, whistles/rattles/drum, string, cups, pipe cleaners, hotwheels, model animals, scissors, paper, tape, and markers. I felt like there were too many options, actually, and also like they kept trying to go back and add more “stuff”. I plan to have fewer options next time!