Roarrrrr! Triceratops, Brachiosaurus, and Stegosaurus…oh my! Fourth-graders at Ada Vista Elementary School recently spent two weeks at the Grand Rapids Public Museum taking a “deeper dive” into dinosaurs, and much more. For four years, Ada Vista fourth-graders have spent time at the local museum as part of their Immerse program. According to their website, the Immerse program “provides a completely immersive, week-long learning experience for students in schools from West Michigan. The experience is crafted and led by the visiting teachers, leveraging the interpretive exhibition spaces, museum artifacts, and various museum programs. Immerse is intended to help students jump-start their development as problem solvers, innovators, storytellers, and empathetic contributors who value diversity.” Ada Vista’s program lasted two weeks, where one day the students spent time at the museum, then the next day they spent time at school for reflection and classroom work.
Every year, Ada Vista students make hats for the four types of social scientists, and they wear them around the museum as they look at the exhibits through the lens of a particular social scientist on a given day. This year, the students created dinosaur hats to go along with the museum’s main exhibit. The museum translated the Community Archives and Research Center tour into Spanish for the Ada Vista students and provided the school with Spanish speaking guides. The planetarium also translated a show into Spanish for the students that they now open for the public as well. This year, Ada Vista paired their economy unit with the new toy exhibit and the students developed and marketed their own toys.
Ada Vista students were part of the dinosaur news video story created and shown with Maranda on WOTV4. The students and teacher, Leslie Edison, are featured at approximately the 4-minute mark on Maranda’s video. To learn more about Immerse, visit the museum’s website, www.grpm.org/immerse.