Ring Elementary School UPK Students Learn About Simple Machines


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Jamestown Public Schools

“You can change all these little knobs to make the stitches bigger, so it’s a machine. This is actually called a sewing machine,” said Ring Elementary School UPK Paraprofessional Katrina Robbins to UPK students.
Mrs. Robbins was showing four-year-old UPK students how a sewing machine works as part of their study of simple machines. She showed them the parts of the sewing machine and gave a demonstration on sewing fabric so the kids could see the sewing machine in action.
“It is so very helpful in the students learning because some of our students have never even seen or heard of a sewing machine let alone know what it is capable of,” said Ring UPK teacher Jill Anderson. “When we bring real-life experiences and items into the classroom, children are automatically engaged with their learning.”
Mrs. Robbins’ lesson was addition to the students’ six-week study of simple machines, which incorporates math, science, technology, art, social studies and literacy. Students have opportunities to learn through whole and small group lessons, books and videos. Their learning extends as they use simple machines in real ways during their interest areas including: inclined planes, levels, screws, wedges, wheel & axles, and pulleys.
The day’s learning is centered on a question related to simple machines that can come from the curriculum but can also be adjusted to meet the curiosity of the students. Questions might include: What do we know about simple machines? What do we want to find out? The four-year-old UPK simple machine unit provides foundational knowledge and vocabulary to get them ready for the fourth grade simple machine. With such high attendance in our UPK program, it creates a level playing field when students need to access this information later.