Rockwell Rockets become rock stars

Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 29, 2022

ROCKWELL — Students at Rockwell Elementary School became rock stars on Friday during their annual Rock Your School event. Each grade level participated in themed activities designed to engage students and bring learning to life in the classroom.


Get Your Teach On’s Rock Your School initiative is an annual event where educators are encouraged to participate in outside-the-box educational experiences to increase student engagement and help students develop a love for learning. At RES, all students were encouraged to dress like rock stars to become fully invested in the day, while each grade level chose the transformation theme their classrooms and activities would take on for the experience.


Kindergarten students spent the week leading up to Rock Your School reading non-fiction books on different species of bats, learning the differences between bats and other animals, and enjoying a read-aloud of the book Stellaluna, by Janell Cannon. On Rock Your School day, kindergarteners participated in a variety of bat-themed activities as a culmination of the week, including bat artwork, having a bat-themed sight word test, and creating a bat-shaped snack.


First graders at RES stuck with the rock star theme as students spent the day focusing on math review of numbers and operations. Each classroom was visited throughout the day by various rock stars, who would deliver a new challenge to be tackled – each challenge required students to practice previously-learned math skills to deepen student number sense.


In second grade classrooms, creepy spiders were the chosen theme. Second grade teachers used blacklights and special lighting to darken the rooms and create a spooky atmosphere. Student had spent the previous week learning about a variety of spider species and had researched chosen spider types. During Rock Your School, these students shared their learning in their newly creeped out classrooms, used sugar cubes, water, and straws to learn how spiders liquify and enjoy their food (yuck!), and finished the day with a spider-shaped snack.


Third graders rocked out by hopping on rockets and visiting outer space. Students completed multi-step word problems, all of which focused on space facts, which is also part of the third-grade science curriculum. Third grade students had the opportunity to travel among all their classrooms, working with a variety of classmates and teachers as they completed their tasks.


Fourth graders had a perplexing mystery to solve for Rock Your School: someone had left a mess in the media center and students had to use clues to determine the culprit. Fourth grade students examined the crime scene found in the media center, where pages had been “ripped” from the back of a couple books, a blanket had been left nearby, feathers were scattered, and the barcode scanner had gone missing. Using context clues and working in teams, students narrowed down the suspects until the mess-maker was found.


Finally, fifth grade students enjoyed rotating through all of the fifth-grade classrooms to complete several different rock and roll themed activities. Two classrooms focused on STEM activities like having students to build a sturdy “stage”, while other classrooms had reading, math, and writing activities, all of which were themed to focus on being rock stars.


— Sarah Cole, Rockwell Elementary School