These are the areas on which I focused in my Action Research Plan:

Problem: 9th grade students at West Central High School historically score low on standard 9-12.P.2.3: Students are able to relate concepts of force, distance, and time to the quantitative relationships of work, energy, and power..

Question: Will integrating 21st Century Skills and Tools improve student achievement on standard 9-12.P.2.3. Specifically, can I engage my students with a global theme and increase their understanding of work, energy, and power?

Plan: Integrate 21st Century Skills and Tools into my lesson plans for standard 9-12.P.2.3. Administer pre and post tests over the standard to gauge student understanding. Use formative assessment in the classroom, over the course of the teaching and after the lesson to check understanding. I plan to have two lesson plans that are globally related and are spread out to keep awareness up as the year progresses.

Reflection: I CANNOT believe how my students embraced the Rube Goldberg project!! They went nuts! To walk around and hear them talking about the different simple machines and making sure there was enough force to complete the task was so gratifying! I truly enjoyed teaching them by making them learn on their own! They taught each other and learned from discussing and bouncing ideas off each other, trying things out, and making improvements to what didn't work.

I also used discussions on the wikispaces to get them talking to each other and asking questions. Some of the discussions were really great, while some were exactly what I expected: "Your post was really good." Some of them presented ideas, were asked questions, and were able to explain and defend their ideas.

Implications for Future Work: I will definitely be using the Rube Goldberg project again. I hope to use it as a guide to do more Project-Based lessons. Letting the students create a product to show me what they have learned was amazing, and so much more meaningful for them.