Super-charge your STEM class with 52 high-engagement, critical thinking, problem-solving, NGSS-aligned challenges to take you through the entire year! Modifications are included to make these activities engaging and challenging for students in grades 2 – 8.
The basic premise:
Students work in partners or groups against criteria & constraints lists and use a combination of science, engineering, math, and technology skills to design and build solutions to problems.
Watch this quick preview showing 43/52 challenges (not shown: Snow Scoop, Frosted Forest, Winter Waiter, Functional Furniture, Groundhog Graffiti, Planetopia Plants, Planetopia Parcels, Wild Weather Shelter, and Create-ure):
Grades 2 – 8? How can this cover such a wide span?
First, please take a look at the top left thumbnail next to the product cover image where I partially addressed this. 🙂
I do have a few things to add! I create the kind of resources I want to buy. I hate the feeling of seeing two products — one for grades 2 – 5 and another grades 6 – 8 — and not knowing which one to buy. I include everything in one product, so there’s no guesswork on your part. You’ll have a highly adaptable resource you can easily take with you if you switch grades or want a high level of differentiation available to you.
Here are a few customer quotes from the Protect-a-Pilgrim challenge that I hope will clear up any remaining doubt. I’ll include more buyer-feedback at the bottom of the description, as well.
“Fun activity to use year after year. It was a great way to challenge my students with learning disabilities (high school). They loved doing this activity.”
“My 7th and 8th graders loved this!”
“Did it with first graders…They loved it!”
“This product was very thoughtfully laid out. It was very easy to follow, engaging, and creative! I really appreciate how you made cross curricular ties to math and language arts. Sometimes it’s tricky to do with science, and this will really help students have fun and make connections. Thank you!”
And the following is a high-school teacher’s comment on this Mega Bundle:
“This is a fantastic bundle! I have already tried a few of these with my high school students and they loved them! The suggestions to increase difficulty definitely provide enough of a challenge to make the high school students have to think and struggle. Also, being able to edit the criteria and constraints allowed me to change what I needed to change to accommodate my students. Thank you!”
Why would I need 52 challenges when there are only 36 weeks in my school calendar?
More is better! Extra challenges can be used in a number of ways:
– Emergency sub-plans
– Parent STEM nights
– Send one home for family homework/activity
– Use in your maker-spaces for early finishers
– Rainy day in-class recess? Gotcha covered!
– STEM field day – do three or more challenges in the same day (STEM Triathlon)
– Offer as extra credit assignments
Is this bundle a good value?
Individual challenges range in price from $3.98 to $4.98 each.
This mega bundle brings the per challenge cost to ~$1.94 each!
The creator of these challenges holds a masters degree in design-based learning and has dedicated more than three years creating the resources in the Mega Bundle. These are among the most thorough and versatile challenges on the market. With video walkthroughs, video PD, modifications for grades 2-8, and continued support via Facebook Lives, this bundle is an incomparable value!
I’ve already purchased some of your challenges. Is there any way to apply what I already spent toward this bundle?
Absolutely! Reach out to me and we’ll get the ball moving: firstname.lastname@example.org.
What do I get when I purchase this bundle?
You get a license to use these incredible challenges in your classroom. The PDF you will download after purchase looks like what you see in the preview; you will receive a link and password to a Dropbox folder (no account required). There, you will have access to (and can download at your convenience) the 52 STEM challenges listed below. Any time there are updates to challenges, these folders will be updated as well.
Note: This is the printable version of the mega bundle. The paperless/ 1:1 bundle can be found here.
Christmas/Winter 5-in-1 Bundle – Includes the following 5 challenges:
– Winter: Snowman Stretch
– Winter: Frozen Fortress
– Christmas: Candy Cane Calamity
– Christmas: Reindeer Relay
– Christmas or Winter: Sleigh & Slope or Sled & Slope
– Snow Scoop
– Frosted Forest
– Winter Waiter
– Black History / Women’s History Month: Functional Furniture
Valentine’s Day 5-in-1 Bundle – Includes the following 5 challenges:
– “Heavy” Hearts
– Cards in the Clouds
– Candy / Confection Container
– Cupid’s Quiver
– Flower Frenzy*
*Flower Frenzy is contains four flower mini-challenges:
– Floating Flowers
– Fluff & Flatten Flowers
– Functional Flowers
– Firmly Fixed Flowers
Planetopia Project STEM
Why should I do STEM challenges in my class?
Benefits of STEM Design Challenges:
– Focus on critical thinking, problem solving, and application of learning
– High levels of student engagement
– The potential to hit upon all NGSS ETS standards depending on the depth and number of iterations you choose to implement in your classroom (modifications included)
– Highly flexible and differentiated for materials, timing, grade levels, and rigor.
How long will STEM challenges take to complete?
Each design iteration should be planned for approximately 60 – 90 min. not including extension activities or second iterations.
What is included in these challenges?
Each seasonal 5-in-1 bundle includes:
• Video walk-throughs of each challenge
• Seasonal STEM Bundle Tips
– Suggestions on timing and whether or not to treat these challenges as competitions
– What to say (and what not to say) during STEM Challenges
– 5-event Data Tracker handout
Plus, each challenge comes with:
NGSS-aligned standards, Grades 2 – 8
– Materials and timing (Materials you’ll need to do the activity are easily modified)
– Criteria & Constraints (including modifications to increase difficulty for older students)
– Measuring results
– Post-design cross-curricular extension activities list
– Links to my STEM challenge “How-to” videos
– Each challenge has its own video walkthrough
– Criteria and Constraints list (editable version provided)
– Results and Design/Data Analysis
– Discussion Questions
– Process Flow Map
– Math Extension
– And other challenge-specific extras (see each product description page for details)
What else do teachers have to say about these STEM challenges? (Comments from my TpT store)
“These STEM challenges are AMAZING!! My students are always begging for another challenge & this mega bundle is perfect!! The challenges definitely stretch my students, yet they allow for all my students to succeed. Terrific discussion questions & the opportunity for students to revise & improve. We love, love, love your challenges!! Thank you!” (Mega Bundle)
“This bundle pack has been the BEST purchase I have ever made on TPT so far! It has literally saved me HOURS of preparation. I do STEM with my students every week, but I’ve always had to plan it all out [sic] myself. Kerry Tracy’s challenges are engaging and detailed and included teacher tutorial videos and all of the handouts you need for your students. The materials are cheap and so easy to find.” (Mega Bundle)
“Amazing and complete STEM activities! My students have LOVED every one! I highly recommend this resources for any classroom – activities can be leveled to your classroom needs.” (Mega Bundle)
“Wow! Thanks! I got your Thanksgiving STEM bundle and had to buy the mega bundle because my class is begging for more!” (Mega Bundle)
“Can’t wait to introduce this challenge to my students. I love that all of your challenges are so engaging. Easy to follow instructions and clear connections to the standards.” (Frozen Fortress)
“WOW! This is one of my favorite TpT purchases to date! This STEM bundle is engaging and fun. My students loved the activities and it was a way to incorporate some fun into learning about Thanksgiving. The bundle was complete with everything you’d need (except building materials) the questions and instructions were well thought out and perfect!” (Corn Cultivator)
“This was an amazing activity, perfect for the last day of school before Halloween. It kept my 5th graders engaged and thinking the entire time. I loved the reactions I got from them when something worked or didn’t work. I will be purchasing your activities in the future!” (Treat Toss)
“This is one of the best activities I’ve ever paid for here on TPT. My students LOVED LOVED LOVED this and we had great discussions about design thinking.” (Reindeer Relay)
“My students loved these challenges and I loved that they were so engaged in learning and problem solving at what is typically a very distracting time of the year. Thank you!” (Winter/Christmas 5-in-1 Bundle)
“Love! Well laid out. Enough wiggle room to adapt to different age groups.” (Valentine’s 5-in-1 Bundle)
“This was a fantastic find for the last week of school. I did a shortened version of this with my 6th and 7th graders and they went crazy over it! They loved the build and then after we tested I let them destroy (the water started the process) and they thought it was awesome. Thank you for creating such a great resource that could be used with many different grade levels.” (Wicked-Fast Water Slide)
“What a great unit. I am using this with my summer school group and they are excited about each day. It makes being in school over the summer a little easier for both them and me.” (Summer 5-in-1 Bundle)
“This is a fantastic bundle! I have already tried a few of these with my high school students and they loved them! The suggestions to increase difficulty definitely provide enough of a challenge to make the high school students have to think and struggle. Also, being able to edit the criteria and constraints allowed me to change what I needed to change to accommodate my students. Thank you!” (Mega Bundle)