Magic and mystery filled Allison Poffenbarger’s classroom at Grundy Avenue Elementary School as her fifth-grade students participated in multiple engaging, Harry Potter-themed STEAM activities throughout the day.
As part of the English language arts curriculum, students recently completed the first book of the Harry Potter series, “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.” Looking to make cross-curricular connections, Poffenbarger then developed collaborative thinking and problem-solving skill-building activities based on the story.
Separated into four groups representing each house depicted in the book, the students began work on each activity in timed 30-minute increments. Students were challenged to create a contraption capable of launching the “Golden Snitch” the greatest distance possible. Equipped with rubber bands, tape, scissors, string and paper towel rolls, the students were free to design and construct the most efficient launcher. In a different activity students were asked to design a marble maze mirroring the one in Gringotts Bank. Each maze was required to have three turns and use 3 feet of paper towel rolls, among other objects, to transfer the marble.
Continuing the fun-filled activities, students crafted their own wands out of various materials provided. Students wrapped their wands in pipe cleaners and string and covered them with colorful glitter to show off their wizardly crafts. As part of another activity, students were tasked with designing the longest dragon possible out of paper towel rolls.
As the culminating activity to the day’s events, each group raced to the finish in a Harry Potter-themed Breakout EDU activity, navigating clues from the popular novel.