There are two aspects of making that I think are not explored to their fullest potential. One is the link between literacy and making. How can we use books as a provocation for making? The second is the documentation of our students' thinking during the making process and how we can use this documentation to make their learning visible.
The book was used as a provocation for our thinking and making. Once we read the book, the students brainstormed a list of "most" things they could make.
As students brainstormed, we put their words into two categories - asking children if they noticed anything similar in the categories of words. It took some prompting, but children eventually realized that making some of the "most" things in column A might not be appropriate for the classroom or easy to do. E.g: Can you imagine what it would it be like for us in the classroom if you make the smelliest thing in the world? Would it be possible for us to make the longest thing in the world?
Our next step was to have the students chose the "most" thing they wanted to make to start building. Some students needed some guidance to remember what they were making ... "E.g: How do the materials you've chosen or how can you assemble the materials you've chosen make the object the silliest thing? What about them makes them silly?"
Most students finished their "most" objects in one sitting. The rest finished them this past Friday.
Some more prompting had to occur during some of the conferences to elicit and stimulate the reasoning behind why they did what they did to make their product. In many cases, students went back and added to their design.