Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School fifth graders enjoyed participating in a recent scavenger hunt around the building that made learning fun.
“Each quarter we are supposed to do a project-based learning piece,” teacher Tracey McManus said. “The PBL is supposed to incorporate science, social studies, English language arts and math. During one of the social studies lessons, the kids had to find the absolute location of a few landmarks. One of my students said this would make an awesome scavenger hunt and the idea was born.”
Mrs. McManus approached Principal Donna Moro about the idea and got the green light to begin planning for the scavenger hunt. Students utilized their Chromebooks, QR codes, compasses and maps to travel throughout building and solve problems.
“The scavenger hunt started with solving math problems and unscrambling a code,” Mrs. McManus explained. “The answer told them the location of the next clue.”
Each time the students scanned the code they were given a task to do, such as solving a puzzle on Pangea, math problems, questions on absolute location vs. relative location and reading and answering questions about the Mayans, Incas, or Aztecs. After completing the task the next clue was revealed when students scanned a QR code.
“The scavenger hunt was an exciting way to showcase everything the students learned,” Mrs. McManus said. “I love that the project idea came from a student and I was able to turn it into something the entire fifth grade was able to enjoy.”
Mrs. McManus’ fifth grade faculty colleagues include Lisa Baldanza, Chris Dugan, Heather Barfuss, Susan Danzig, Jennifer Stucchio, Emily Lohse, Kim Myers, Desirae Stropoli and Dina Telesco.