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School Stories

Grade 3: Designing Life Zone Animals in Tinker Time

Each year, after completing the Chief Mountain Hike at the start of the school year (a Grade 3 tradition), students return to campus to continue learning about life zones. In addition to lessons in their social studies, library, and art classes, third graders also explore life zones in Tinker Time by designing an animal for their culminating diorama project.
After selecting an animal, looking up pictures for reference on an iPad, and creating a sketch in the Gates Invention and Innovation Lab, students got to visit the Tinker Time store to collect items for their creations. After being encouraged by Lower School Innovation Specialist Mrs. Leddy to think outside the box and use ordinary items in extraordinary ways, students got to work using model magic clay, buttons, popsicle sticks, pipe cleaners, pom poms, toothpicks, and more to bring their animal designs to life. Following the completion of at least one animal in class, the third graders finished their dioramas at home and got to present their final project to their classmates and Grade 7 buddies!
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Graland Country Day School

Graland Country Day School is a private school in Denver, Colorado, serving students in preschool, kindergarten, elementary, and middle school. Founded in Denver in 1927, Graland incorporates a rich, experiential learning approach in a traditional classroom setting, emphasizing the development of globally and socially conscious leaders who excel academically.