Each expedition at Detroit Achievement Academy starts with a BBK workshop, which stands for "building background knowledge." The BBK workshop is a staple of the Expeditionary Learning model through which students are introduced to the expedition topic using five key components: the mystery piece, activating schema, common text, expert text, and sharing new knowledge. It's amazing to watch students' excitement grow about the expedition through this framework for meaningful learning!
In March, DAA second graders started their second expedition of the year--Honeybees in the D(AA)! For our "Bee" BK, second graders observed six different mystery boxes and tried to guess what we would become experts in this spring. They used their senses to touch, smell, hear, see, and taste different items related to bees. Students recorded their observations in the Science Notebooks, a journal where they will capture their learning throughout the expedition. First, students felt a giant hexagon made of beeswax! Mystery box two was a bottle filled with bee pollen--students shook the container and made guesses about what the tiny seed-like objects could be. In the third box was a honeycomb; students stuck one finger into the waxy, sticky substance and squealed with surprise. A buzzing sound came from the fourth mystery box (our classroom iPad was hidden inside with a video of bees playing!), and students were both nervous and excited to listen! This clue allowed students to guess that we would be becoming honeybee experts throughout our expedition. When we finally got to taste the fifth clue of a honey stick, the room was buzzing with joyful questions.
After students solved the mystery of our topic, they shared what they already know and what they want to know about honeybees using a K-W-L chart. We made a larger chart as a crew, and students created their own charts in their Science Notebooks. Students asked insightful questions about hives, how honey is made, and how bees communicate! For the past few weeks, students have been keeping track of everything they've been learning as we read our common and expert texts to become honeybee experts.
The BBK is such an impactful way to kick off every expedition. Second grade can't wait to share all that we have learned about honeybees at our Celebration of Learning on June 18th!