In Let’s Go Fly a Kite, second graders had the opportunity to learn all about kites, fly kites, and make their own kites while exploring the essential questions: “what can flying kites teach us?” and, “how can I measure the success of my flight?” Students learned about the history of kite flying, kite symbolism, and kite flying strategies through experts, fiction and nonfiction texts, and creating and flying their own kites. Let’s Go Fly a Kite is a project that included authentic math, reading, and writing connections, as well as a way for students to get outside, have genuine fun, and collaborate with their peers. This project has given students a deep bank of knowledge not only about kites, but also about the varying lessons that flying kites can teach us.
What surprised us the most about this project is the connections and teamwork that have transpired through spotter and flyer partnerships. These partnerships have been so encouraging and have flourished to be more than we ever thought. This project is also unique because all students experience a range of incredibly successful flights and then turn around to have a lesson from failing the very next day. This project gives all students experiences with both success and failure. This allows students to experience and learn from their frustration and provides a humbling experience for everyone. Through answering the essential question, “how can I measure the success of my flight?” students are redefining what success is. They are recognizing that sometimes failure is not necessarily about them and are able to think about outside variables, like weather. Finally, this project has authentic connections to all parts of our school day. Students are truly thinking about kites from the beginning to end of their day. It has felt so powerful to make each part of the school day feel purposeful and important!
— Meg & Dani
My favorite part of the project is when I ran out of string. I ran out of string and it unattached from my spool. It meant I got to join the out of line club. Also on my first flight my kite just took off and had good stability even though I had never done it before. Kite flying has taught me how to be encouraging when working with another person.