November 2016 Tech/PBL Teacher



Mrs. Janet Rivera, resource teacher at Newman Middle School, has been chosen as one of the Tech/PBL teachers for the month of November. Mrs. Rivera recently had her Science students complete a PBL titled “Turning Solid and Liquid Into Gas.”

The Driving Question was, “How can we, as rookie scientists, perform an investigation utilizing available materials in the classroom while making sure that WE follow safety rules accordingly?”

Prior to the presentation of this PBL, the students were introduced to a lesson called “Matter: What is it, and what it’s not?” Students were provided with several opportunities to learn, understand, and master the concept, as specified below: 

*Students explored the classroom and identified everything they saw as matter. 

*Students used word tiles and decided whether each word was matter or not matter. 

*Students viewed video clips from Brainpop for additional information. 

*Students browsed magazines and categorized pictures as solid, liquid, or gas. They also presented their finished product to the class. 

*Students explored outside of school and observed surroundings. They classified every item they saw whether it was a solid, liquid, or gas. 

*Students conducted several hands-on observations in the classroom (example: water to ice cubes to steam).

Students were truly engaged in every activity during the course of the lesson. They obviously learned the concept while having tremendous FUN!

*Thanks to the creativity, patience, and assistance of Mrs. Virginia Johnston!*


Mrs. Alicia Reyna and Mrs. Kourtnie Martinez, 4th grade teachers at RBE, have also been chosen as Tech/PBL teachers for the month of November.

Students in Mrs. Reyna and Mrs. Martinez’ classes participated in a Math PBL called Fraction Pizzas. Students worked in groups to create pizzas using different types of materials. Students used the fractional parts of their pizza to create equivalent fractions, decompose fractions, write fractions as the sum of the fractions and unit fractions, add and subtract fractions and create word problems. Students presented their projects to parents and visitors at Open House. {The fourth grade classes would like to thank Flying J for donating the pizza boxes.}

Fourth grade students also participated in a Math PBL called “Plan a Thanksgiving Dinner.” Students worked in groups to create a dinner using a budget. Students practiced adding and subtracting decimals and learned about food prices and serving sizes by using the HEB and Walmart websites. Students then presented their PBL’s using the Educreations App.

Students also participated in a Science PBL where they explored changes in mixtures and solutions. Students chose activities from a project board to show differences between mixtures and solutions. They created comic strips, posters, and stories to show what they had learned. 


Mr. Gabriel Perez, Resource Teacher at Newman Middle School, has also been named as Tech/PBL teacher for the month of November.

The Driving Question for Mr. Perez’ latest PBL was: “How can we as students teach others how to remember the states and important information about the states?” For more pictures please visit our CISD PBL webpage and look for the page titled, “Mr. Gabriel Perez: States PBL.”