Focusing on Data: Year 5 Students Making STEM Connections
Integrated STEM learning experiences provide the opportunity for students to make connections among the various disciplines. The outcomes for many STEM activities, however, are only reported for one discipline and provide little guidance for taking an integrated approach to learning in the classroom. This paper reports on a Year 5 STEM activity based on designing, making, and trialling seed dispersal devices. A focus on the data collected by the class and the subsequent graphical representations created during follow- up interviews, illustrates the way in which the students made connections to multiple STEM disciplines. The results indicate that Year 5 students have the capacity to use graphical representations of data to describe the performance of seed dispersal devices and base informal inferences about the performance of the devices on their knowledge of design, construction, materials, and flight from the various STEM disciplines.