Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Slice of Challenge



It sounded like a great idea at the time. Signing up to receive a set of 36 Rubik's Cubes to help build my students' visual spatial skills and attention to detail seemed like a fabulous notion. Add in the fact that the entire set would be shipped to me - for me to borrow for six weeks - for FREE? Heck, yes!

The unit incorporates solving the cube (with directions) and creating fictional creatures using a codon table and some basics about DNA. My first step was to relearn some of the basics about the proteins that go into those DNA strands. I don't expect my students to become genetics experts, but they did need some background knowledge to make sense of what we would be doing. Thank goodness for Tim and Moby at Brainpop!

Help me, Obi-wan Kenobi.
Fortunately, my box of Rubik's Cubes finally arrived on the Friday before my unit was to begin. Unfortunately, I was at the PA gifted conference that day.
Fortunately, I had to go to work for the day on Saturday (is that fortunately?!?)
Unfortunately, the box was filled with THIRTY-SIX unsolved cubes. That needed to be solved for Monday.
Fortunately, there were directions for solving the cube in the box.
Unfortunately, I am AWFUL at following visual directions. (Why, oh why, do I get myself into these things?)
Fortunately, my stubbornness and desire to show my students that we can work through our problems got me through.




Many hours and two sore hands later....

I started teaching my fifth graders yesterday. They were mightily impressed with my Rubik's prowess. I don't think I'll ever be able to internalize all those directions - but maybe one of my students will!



I’m participating in a writing community at Two Writing Teachers. We write about a little "slice of our life" each Tuesday.  If you stop by and have written your own slice, please leave the link in the comments so I can easily find your post!



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