Generally people remember stories and much of children’s play involves taking on a persona. Conveniently, many courses involve multiple units, thus allowing multiple rounds of “play” and “identity” for students. The stories they make need to be thoughtful and challenging enough that students successfully complete the “Hero’s Journey,” with a healthy sense of being uplifted by the challenges encountered on the way. This is quite doable with a thoughtful implementation of an Agile Kickoff process. One of my favorite books on this subject is in the resources below.
Uplift focuses on the creation of an atmosphere in which students build on existing strengths and grow their self-confidence. Dangerous to an atmosphere of uplift are traditional assessment practices.
Importance of encouraging exploration, context, and challenge.
Reflections on educational improvements through student choice, self-regulation, and challenge.
STEAM projects provide an excellent avenue for student engagement and excellence through student choice, buy-in and challenge.