On February 26, I participated in a workshop with Lindsey Own, Vinnie Vrotny, Jaymes Dec, and Andrew Carle on Maker Education. It was AWESOME! (You can read a summary of the details of the workshop on Lindsey’s blog post, #MakerEd at #NAISac14!) I applaud their plan, pedagogy, and execution. It was a real workshop with learner choice and learning by doing. Here’s a glimpse of the action:
My favorite of the experiences was the sewing station. Using a strip of felt, snaps, an led, a battery, and some conductive thread, I created a wearable circuit. Now, I have to confess that I have, in my past, co-taught calculus-based physics to seniors. While I was the calculus person on the team, I did quite well with circuits. I could read most problems, draw the circuit (in parallel or in series) and answer the question posed by the book. Sewing my bracelet at NAIS was the first time I ever created, touched, designed a circuit. Amazing and sad at the same time. How much more would I have understood about physics if I’d had the sewing experience first?
I wanted to have two leds on my bracelet. In conversation with my 9-year old, she asked if her bracelet could have her name as well light up. Trying to apply her ideas into my learning, here’s the next iteration in my learning:
I used 18 ct Aida cross stitch fabric and DMC thread to produce my bracelet. I tried to capture the process in pictures.
How might we connect ideas with our learners? How might we ramp up design and hands-on experiences to make additional opportunities for curiosity, creativity, critical reasoning, communication, collaboration, and control?