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The Elementary Library: Technology, Art, Engineering

How an elementary librarian used Rubik's Cubes to make mosaics with her students.

The Elementary Library: Technology, Art, Engineering

My personal professional goals are to incorporate more ART and MATH in STEAM.  The past two years have been heavy on the Science, Technology, and Engineering.

So here is what we have done to meet this goal:

Week 1 - We created snowflake gears.

Weeks 2 & 3 - We created a Rubik’s Cube mosaic of a flower.

How did the students create a Rubik’s Cube mosaic?  First, I borrowed the cubes for FREE through You Can Do the Rubik’s Cube.  I only had to pay for the shipping back.

Next, I printed off two copies of the flower template from the You Can Do the Rubik’s Cube website. (Templates are found at:  I laminated one set and as the “board” and cut the second set into squares for each cube pattern.  I separated the patterns, taking out the ‘easy patterns’ and cubes that were solid faces.

During the classes, each student was given a 2x2 Rubik’s Cube, a note card with the pattern needed for the mosaic and a corresponding number indicating the cube’s position in the mosaic.  After they solved a cube, they walked out to the computer floor and added their cube to the mosaic. When all the Rubik’s Cubes were complete, I slid the four sections of 12 Cubes each together to create the final mosaic!

Overall, it went well.  I had a few classes that had several broken Rubik’s Cubes.  In addition, students lacked GRIT. If they could not get it immediately, they would either verbally complain, hand the Cube off to a successful peer, or simply abandon their Cube.  Even with those struggles, all of my classes completed at least 20 out of 23 pattern cubes needed to create the mosaic.

If I were to do it again, I would have a few extra Rubik’s Cubes on hand.  I would also possibly try to selectively hand harder combinations to certain students who could handle the challenge.

The students were amazed at what they created.

After they were done with mosaics, they had free-choice engineering.  The new LEGO wall is a HUGE hit as well as a KEVA PLANKS challenge I added to the choices.

by Heather Hedderman, originally published to her blog at Posted with permission

ycdtrc.blogger1 | 2018 10 24 |
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