Ask students if you wanted to build a fort in our room what would you need? Students brainstorm share ideas. Show video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pa4_x9tPwsU using building blocks to demonstrate a larger structure that is made from smaller pieces.
Step 1: Use a KWL and post it on chart paper. Have students tell what they Know , Want to Know, and Want to Learn about how big structures are made. Consider using the online KWL Creator by ReadWriteThink.
Step 2: Have students in cooperative groups of five or seven. Have assorted building materials for each group to choose from. Each group choose one building item per person to use to build a structure and tell its possible use.
Step 3: Have each group stop after five to seven minutes and take a photo of their work. Have the group disassemble their structure and then reassemble it in a different way. After five to seven minutes all stop and take a photo of their structure.
Step 4: Have all students clean up materials and write and draw what they learned with their group. Teacher collect all the photos to be displayed while students work on their journals.
Step 5: Teacher and groups present their structures to the rest of the class. Groups explain what small materials they used to make their structure and possibly what the structures are.
What have we learned?
Add the L to the KWL. Students should have learned that small pieces are used to build bigger structures and you can arrange them in different ways to make new structures. Add additional observations that students notice.