The Kyrene del Cielo DISCOVERoom is a dedicated room accessible to students during their lunch recess, in which they can freely investigate a variety of science and engineering concepts. Non-directed exploration (i.e. ‘play’) is as crucial as direct instruction to a well-rounded science education. The intent of this room is to complement classroom instruction by providing an opportunity for students to immerse themselves in a science and engineering-rich environment, with the ultimate goal being to stimulate a sustained interest in these disciplines.
Each class is assigned 1 day per week when they may send between 6-8 students to the discovery room during their 20 minutelunchrecess. Between 3-5 parent, grandparent and community volunteersare present during thestudents' visitto assist, mediate, explain and engage the children in self-directed exploration or organized small-group activities. During the fall semester, student teachers from ASU's I-TEACH program present theme-based interactive mini-lessons to the kids. In spring, parents and community members take over the presentation of mini-lessons and an annual LEGO building contest is held.
The Kyrene del Cielo DISCOVERoom is funded primarily through tax credit dollars. This money is allocated through the Kyrene del Cielo Site Council, with expenditures overseen by Cielo administrative staff.
Kyrene del Cielo’s Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) also provides some financial assistance to the DISCOVERoom. We also receive a great many material donations – new, used and recycled.
- Our “invention bin” – a constantly-replenished assortment of recyclable items that are incorporated into unique building projects that kids can take home
- A library of science and engineering reading materials, a variety of child-directed magazines,
- Science-themed coloring sheets
- Magnifying glasses, weighing scales, microscopes
- A zoom-scope and miscellaneous materials to view close up on a television screen
- A light table and assorted x-rays (dental, human and animal)
- Stations holding natural specimens including animal skulls and bones, shells, rocks, insects
- Plastic 3-D anatomical models
- An aquarium, a terrarium
- Molecule kits
- A variety of science & engineering exploration kits, and materials for mini-experiments and demonstrations
- Engineering-directed toys including Legos, Magnetix, Snap Circuits, K’Nex, Erector sets
- Models of simple machines
- Kits teaching about electricity, light, sound, magnetics, etc.
- A Smart Board and several computers set up with interactive activities
- A collection of broken or obsolete mechanical, electric and electronic items for take-apart explorations
- And more!