Some of the projects we build and work on in the show "Take Me to Your Readers." Note that a Woven Arch Bridge is sometimes called a "da Vinci Bridge" because Leonardo da Vinci wrote about them. However, there are woven arch bridges in China that are still in use today, that were built more than 1,000 years before da Vinci was born. I am currently unable to upload the 3D printer files I used to construct the tin can robot because the web site program I use doesn't support .STL files. So if you are interested here are the direct links to the front forks, the connector between the two tin cans, and the back wheels for the robot. Feel free to download, print, and use these files as is, or modify them to build your OWN cool designs! You can also read a bit about my frustrations as I built the robot and the problems I encountered and the solutions I developed. A lot of that is detailed on my blog in 2019 starting in Feb, another Feb. post, then into March, April, and May with several updates near the end of July after doing the show almost 100 times during the summer. The Arduino code for the robot is included as a PDF file with pretty detailed notes. I would have loved to uploaded the Arduino code file, but my web provider doesn't support that file type. If you need it as a text file, just email me and I'll gladly send it and might even upload it here if there is enough interest.
Years ago I was hired to create a fun reward program for all the Middle School students who had participated in a school wide "Read it Forward" program using the book "Escape From Mr. Lemoncello's Library" by Chris Grabenstein. I developed several different, literature-based puzzles that had to be solved by the group within 45 minutes in order for them to "escape." Below are the downloads for a few of those puzzles. There were also some tangram puzzle "locks" that had to be solved, which is what some of these puzzles allude to. Also, not all these puzzles will work for you exactly as they are. One references the "bald man" and another references the name of the librarian who hired me for the original project. Unless you are bald and/or have the same name as my past client, then you will need to modify some of these puzzles to suit your needs, but they should at least get you started with some fun ideas. Also, check out my blogpost from December of 2010 where I talk about other puzzles and games that you can use.
In the show titled "Set Sail" we explore the craft and style of great authors by analyzing their award-winning texts. Below are a few downloadable PDFs that can be used to elaborate on the lessons covered in the show. Each little "hint" or "trick" I teach in the show can ultimately become the foundation for an entire lesson or even a week of lessons. When we talk about elaborating with adjectives, I specifically mention that we have more senses than just sight. Paragraph writers can have a writing prompt each day that changes simply by changing the sensation used in interpreting the stimulus. (e.g. a day of writing about how the beach SOUNDS, another day describing the SMELLS, etc.).