Bulletin Board Project
Objective: The point of having students create a "current event" bulletin board is two fold. First I want to make sure that I am creating responsable citizens as well as people who are literate in science. Part of being a responsible citizen is having a global view and being aware of what is going on in the world. The second reason is I want to hopefully get someone who is not in AP Biology (so maybe not a science geek!) to stop and read about something in science for a moment.
What do I need to do?
Find a current (something from the last 6 months) news article and create a bulletin board that explains the subject and why it is relavant.
How should the bulletin board be set up?
Well for an example I threw together a board to show a sort of entry level version of what I expect. I chose to do it on the supervolcano situation going on in yellowstone ... not biology really (more earth science) but it was sort on time and it was the news article that I was currently obsessing over.
Here is a picture of my final project that I invested about 3.5 hours on (working alone).
Each news article is unique so there isn't a definite template that will work for every board. The best approach for most boards it to assume that they are being read from left to right. On the far left side it is a good idea to give the history of whatever subject that you are covering. So for my bulletin board I started with explaining what a supervolcano was and some history behind the yellowstone supervolcano.
As you can see I included interesting visual aids to understand the history as well as pictures of other resources if interested. The actual text portion I got from a website but I edited it by taking out redundant info and extra information that wasn't extremely relavant. I tried to make sure that the language left was not overbearing, was easy to read and got to the point.
The middle of the bulletin board is where I got into the current news article. I decided to label it with "what is happening now?" to lead from the history to the current news. I took the article that I was reading and I edited it to take out some extra info and polished the language to be able to get the information across faster for students who are not likely to sit and read the board for a long period of time.
Finally I finished the board with covering what that means to them - why should they care? This is where you can cover the more personal aspects of the story and even talk about the future of the subject at hand. I enlarged and bolded certain sentences for students that can only stop and read for a matter of 30 seconds. If they feel interested enough then they can come back and read more.
This is just a template suggestion - not all subjects can work this way and can be ordered in this fashion. For example - if you are doing a list of some sort (top ten discoveries or something like that) then the format would look different.
What does "Neatness/Asthetically Pleasing" mean?
Asthetically pleasing means that the entire board looks neat and is decorated in an eye catching manner. Science by itself can be dry so it should look inviting and at the very lease make someone stop to look at the design and hopefully read a little bit. As you can see on the board that I did I added a couple of things to make it more interesting. I cut out the papers so they weren't all the same shape or size and I also put them on a seperate color paper to frame them.
In addition to that I made the background of the entire bulletin board match the subject in some manner. Honestly I would have liked to do more on this level but I was pressed for time. I still managed to cut out trees and make a little old faithful geyser!
Things that will be counted off for - incomplete designs, sloppy work, not using enough staples (papers are falling off or curling) or too many staples (no reason to go overboard to make a point!), lots of empty space (notice I used diagrams and even book covers to keep everything colorful and interesting).
You don't have to be inherently artistic to do this but I would say that it is a good idea to think about all the roles needing to be filled before you commit to a group!
What does "current news article in biology" mean?
So for the most part I would like you to stick with something in the field of Biology. If you don't know what I mean by this or are unsure - basically ask you if there is a unit in the class that the subject would work with. If you are still unsure ask me.
As for current - I am saying that it should be within the last 6 months. Also it shouldn't be anything that was only relevant at that point (for example an eclipse article a few months after it happened wouldn't be suggested.) Again - if you are unsure please ask me!
How do I turn it in?
You are given a 3 day window (generally from a wednesday to a friday) to take down the previous bulletin board and put yours up. If possible please take down the previous bulletin board in a way that preserves the artwork, boarders or decorative items they used so that they might be used again if possible. If you have free time at the end of class or intervention then I will happily give you that time to work on your bulletin boards but please make sure to check with me ahead of time if this is a must (due transportation and inability to stay after school) because I often have activities planned that take up the entire time.
Once your board is finished you need to create a document for canvas for grading purposes. The document should contain pictures of your bulletin board with explinations of your approach (basically feel free to point out all the cool stuff you did) and a list of your group members along with everything each person was responsible for. This document must be turned in by the end of the school day following your bulletin board's due date.
Below you will find the Rubric - if you have any questions or concerns about what something on the rubric means then you must ask me AT LEAST 24 HOURS IN ADVANCE TO WHEN YOUR PROJECT IS DUE. You must complete one board per quarter or you will recieve a 0 quiz grade. You are responsible for keeping up with your dates - I should not have to remind you. If you are late then 10 points a day will be deducted from the final grade.