COLUMBIA, Ky. — Second-grade students here recently applied their researching skills and technological know-how to a video and school curriculum that address school bus safety and won a state championship.
The Adair County Primary Center students researched, scripted, recorded, and edited "Bus Safety for Everyone," a video on school bus safety, and created a curriculum to present with it. The video and curriculum won the Kentucky Student Technology Leadership Program Championship in March.
The students take part in the after-school Student Technology Leadership Program (STLP), which every year selects a topic to present information on in a regional showcase. The second-grade student STLP team chose the theme, “Bus Safety for Everyone,” after realizing that the school bus safety video that was being shown to the students was almost 10 years old.
“Some of the people in the old video had already gone on to graduate and do other things,” said Laura Marcum, the coordinator of the STLP team and a music teacher at the district. “And, they thought a new one would be fun to do, and would benefit students.”
In addition to a video covering school bus safety rules, the students created an accompanying curriculum for teachers. It consists of materials that test school bus safety knowledge, including a worksheet, coloring page, cheer, board game, and a test. To sweeten the deal, the students added a recipe for an edible treat: a Twinkie that is decorated with cookies and candy to look like a school bus.
The board game and test are also digital-friendly: the questions for the test and cards for the game were created using Plickers, an online tool and app designed for teachers, allowing them to collect real-time data on student performance and comprehension without the need for student devices.
The teacher can take an iPad or a smartphone and scan across the room with the app, and the device’s camera captures every player’s cards, giving immediate feedback to the teacher on whether the students' answers are correct or incorrect, which is indicated with green and red tags. On a white board screen, students can view the question, choices for answers, who has answered or still needs to answer, and the percentage of correct and incorrect answers. The app also offers the capability to do a live feed with each player’s name and score.
"The board game they created was impressive but pricey," Marcum said. "They made an alternative that can be projected on a white board. After printing off the game cards, magnets and dice can be used to play the game and reinforce topics and rules that were covered in the video."
Some curriculum materials, including the coloring page, worksheet, game cards and game board, bus safety test, and the treat recipe, are available to anyone for free through the school district’s website.
The team competed in the State STLP Showcase in Lexington on March 29. Their project, "Bus Safety for Everyone," took home the K-5 State Championship.
The students will showcase their project this summer at the International Society of Technology in Education in Chicago, Illinois.
The video and accompanying curriculum can be found here.