Fairy tale provides STEM lesson at San Diego Jewish Academy

San Diego Jewish Academy’s kindergarten class applied STEM concepts to the story of the Three Little Pigs.

Most people have read the story of the Three Little Pigs who made their houses out of straw, wood and bricks in an effort to withstand the huffing and puffing of the Big, Bad Wolf. Well, it’s no different at the San Diego Jewish Academy (SDJA) — except for a few minor points.

SDJA’s Golda Meir Lower School, the first elementary school in San Diego to adopt the science curriculum of Project Lead The Way (PLTW), has its students learning about design process and material science. They are exploring structure and function, and this is where the story of the Three Little Pigs comes to life.

For their lesson, the students had to help three little pigs to build a house out of whatever material they had available: sticks, straws or bricks. The function of the house was to protect the pigs from the big, bad wolf. After reading the story, the students brainstormed on how to best design and hold their structures together.

The students then sketched their designs, built the houses, and their teacher — Mrs. Lerner, aka the Big Bad Wolf — used a blow dryer to test their functionality. The results of the tests were carefully analyzed, and if the house could not withstand the wolf’s blow, the students made changes to their design.

All in a day’s work in SDJA’s Science/STEM lab — for kindergartners!