One of the many ways elementary teachers try to integrate STEM into their classroom is by intentionally choosing STEM read alouds, books that incorporate STEM-related content (science, technology, engineering, and/or mathematics). You can find many wonderful STEM book lists that have been curated to include picture books that model innovation, illustrate authentic problems, and invite divergent thinking.
But what if I told you there’s something even better than a fresh stack of STEM read alouds, something that not only incorporates captivating read alouds but also adds hands-on STEM activities into the mix? I’m so excited to introduce you to a new resource that marries two things every student adores: engaging read alouds and real STEM activity adventures. Introducing Stop the Story STEM™!!!
Exploring Stop the Story STEM Read Aloud Resources
Imagine combining the timeless charm of classic, well-loved stories like “Little Red Riding Hood” with a STEM twist. That’s precisely what Stop the Story STEM resources offer. Stop the Story STEM read aloud activities integrate ELA with STEM and help students think critically & creatively about planning a design customized for characters to solve problems in the story.
How does it work?
First, students “stop the story” to identify big and small problems the characters have throughout the read aloud. For example, in Little Red Riding Hood, some of the problems students may identify include Granny is sick, Little Red Riding Hood must travel through a dangerous forest, or the wolf eats Granny.
After giving students time to brainstorm and share multiple problems, students choose a problem that they are most interested in helping the character to solve. They are then supported through a series of activities that help them brainstorm and analyze realistic design solutions (no magic!), create a design board to visually represent ideas using a combination of pictures and text, and create a final design.
What Makes Stop the Story STEM Read Alouds So Exceptional?
Oh let me count the ways! Stop the Story STEM read alouds engage students in listening comprehension skills, identifying problems in a story, defining the criteria and constraints to solve problems, visual brainstorming, analyzing designs, giving feedback, and improving designs based on feedback. But my favorite things about Stop the Story STEM resources are:
Integrating ELA with STEM
Stop the Story STEM read aloud activities seamlessly weaves STEM elements into classic stories, turning a well-loved story into a learning adventure. These engaging activities not only enhance student’s reading comprehension but also empower them to explore the fascinating world of STEM, igniting a passion for discovery and problem-solving.
Flexibility and student choice are so important when is comes to STEM activities. Stop the Story STEM read alouds allow students to identify story problems and choose which one they are interested in solving the most, giving space for students to tap into their creativity. I love the idea of everyone working on solving different story problems with a STEM design! Can’t you just see the bulletin board now?!
Designed to Support Students Through The Engineering Design Process
When it comes to STEM activities, students often want to blow right through the planning and get to building. Over the past year I have become increasingly interested in creating resources that better support students in the planning step of the engineering design process, or EDP. Stop the Story STEM resources were designed to walk students through the EDP methodically, giving them more practice with this important step.
What Is Included In Stop The Story STEM Resources?
✅ Step-by-Step student directions to guide them through the process in two versions:
- Colorful Google Slides™ to project, assign, or print in center folders
- Black & white printable packets – perfect for sub plans!
✅ Editable text on all student slides & handouts
✅ Teacher guide with tips & sample answers for each step
✅ QR code to read-aloud version of the story on YouTube
✅ Stop the Story STEM™ printable bookmarks
Shop Stop The Story STEM Resources:
Stop the Story STEM resources are game changers! They combine the enchantment of storytelling with the power of STEM, providing students with an unforgettable learning experience! Look for more titles to be added soon!
Related Blog Posts
- 30 Simple STEM Activities for the Classroom
- Creativity and Critical Thinking in STEM – Getting Students to Actually PLAN!