If you already read my blog post, Learning With Lego, then you know they are my go-to manipulative for learning of all ages. But…Keva Planks are a close second! You may be wondering what in the world I’m talking about and that’s ok. I was in the same place just a few years ago, until I walked into the Virginia Children’s Engineering Convention in Roanoke, Virginia, and I saw a contraption designed with Keva Planks that allowed ping pong balls to travel through like a slide.
In a nutshell, Keva Planks are wooden blocks that can be used to build. They are unique in the sense that they are identical to each other, no varying colors, sizes, or shapes. They are extremely simple, but that is their secret. Students have to add their own creativity. They turn plain wooden blocks into creative designs, and they don’t have to worry about digging through a box to find the exact color they want. You’re probably wondering, “Well. How do I use them? Are they really that versatile? Aren’t they just for little kids?”
Here’s the low down…just like LEGO, Keva Planks are for kids of all ages! I use them for all my students kindergarten through fifth grade, and I have students who even prefer to build with them over LEGO. The big picture is that students work to build stable structures, which is a phrase we use a lot in STEAM class. And yes, even my kindergarteners can tell you what a stable structure means and what it looks like!
letters of the alphabet
playing Jenga (students build their own game!)
And the list could go on!
So are you convinced? Do you want some of your own?! Check them out!