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Learning comes naturally and spontaneously through play, and this project focuses on using play to make learning fun and engaging for kinder students. To align with their physical science unit on forces in motion and introducing the engineering design element of making a physical model, students construct a penguin special friend made from simple materials like coffee cups, and are then tasked to construct a range of engineering upgrades in the form of objects, extra functioning appendages for their penguins, and game boards. Students try out a multitude of games involving pushing, pulling, and directing their penguin friend in order to “win” the game. Finally, they invite their higher-grade buddies to join in, taking on the role of teachers and speakers, as they teach their buddies how to play and answer questions about how their penguins function.


CCSS English Language Arts
RL K.1, RI K.1, W K.2, SL K.2, SL K.3, SL K.4, SL K.5

NGSS Science
K-PS2-1, K-PS2-2

CA Arts Standards
K.VA:CR1.1, K.VA:CR1.2, 2.VA:CR2.1, K.VA:CR2.3, K.VA:RE.7.2, K.VA:CN10

Grade Level