The first grade class has been learning about the importance of shelter and what homes look like around the world. To begin the unit, the students wrote down questions they had related to homes. Culture, climate, and materials that are used to build homes were all part of the questions that were then posted on their Wonder Wall. Next, the students set out to learn the answers to their essential questions using a variety of resources.
One resource that the first graders were able to learn from was the 8th graders! Having recently returned from their Puerto Rican field experience, where they helped rebuild houses destroyed by Hurricane Maria, the eighth graders were now well versed in the building materials used and the ways homes are constructed in Puerto Rico. The eighth graders shared a presentation with the first graders about the climate and impact of hurricanes in Puerto Rico. They then shared how the houses are now being constructed to withstand the hurricane winds and water.
The first graders joined the eighth graders and Mr. Javier to get a hands-on demonstration of the home building process in Puerto Rico. The first graders helped mix cement, adding in extra rocks and sand to make it even stronger. The group then filled a preformed column, which Mr. Javier had already inserted rebar reinforcements into, with the cement.
A big thank you to the eighth graders for teaching the first graders about homes in Puerto Rico. This was a great hands-on learning experience for first grade.