ACCORD Summer 2015 - page 16-17

Twenty-first century learning is all about the four C’s:
communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity.
Though our educators implement the four C’s every day in the
classroom, a newmaker space for pre-K to 4th-grade students
has allowed teachers to expand their lessons. Located in the
Media Center and converted from a former office space, the
MakerLabhasbecomeaplacewherestudentscanwork together
tocreatesomethingnewwhile infusingprinciplesofengineering,
invention, self-directed learningandmore.
In addition to the four C’s, the use of technology is another
demand of 21st century education. However, the Maker Lab
aims to develop a different, but equally important, set of skills.
Elementary instructional technology specialist Erica Oakhill
explains, “TheMaker Lab is not about technology. It’s about the
kidsmaking and creating. I think it’swonderful we have the 3-D
printer, and if the technology supports the project, then great,
but theMakerLab ismeant tobeaplacewherekidsget to tinker,
discover and figure thingsout on their own.”
Both Oakhill and elementary school curriculum specialist
Dr. Tricia Dieck attended a workshop about the new Maker
Movement at the Florida Education Technology Conference and
broughtback ideas tomake themostof thespace.The3rd-grade
students spent several sessions in the Maker Lab during their
invention unit. Students began the process in the classroom by
pairingupandbrainstorminggamesonewould findat acarnival.
After planning and communicating ideas with their partners,
studentschoseonecarnival game tocreateusingcardboardand
other recyclable items. TheMaker Labwas the perfect space to
explore ideas, construct their carnival games and evaluate other
groups’games,offering feedbackandadviceonways to improve
the final products.
Dieckworkedwith thestudents throughout theprojectandnotes,
“Theircreativityandproblem-solving [skills]blewmeaway.They
had these amazing ideas andhad tobring them to reality from a
drawingonpaper. Theprojectwasopen-endedand thestudents
had a lot of control over it. They were so excited and so proud
about thework theydid, andall thegamesworked!”
enjoyed putting the games to the test at the Creative Cardboard
Carnival. The 3rd-graders had a blast explaining the rules and
watchingothersenjoy theirgamesafter spendinghourscreating
them in theMakerLab.Theycertainly tookpride in theirprojects,
and their hardworkshowed.
The 4th-grade students also worked in the Maker Lab during
a wrap-up of their electricity unit. They used a Makey Makey
Invention Kit to experiment and learn the fundamentals of
electrical conductivity and circuits. Even high school geometry
studentsused thespaceand the3-DMakerBotprinter toenhance
their learningof space figures, surfaceareaandvolume through
With a fewMaker Lab projects under their belts, Oakhill, Dieck
and the elementary school teachers are excited to get more
use out of the space in the coming school year. While content
knowledge will continue to be taught in the classroom, each
lower grade level hopes towork in the space as an extensionof
learning. Many students tend to learn best by doing, andwhere
better “todo” than inaMaker Lab?
ToseeavideoofAcademystudentsworking in theMakerLab,
1,2-3,4-5,6-7,8-9,10-11,12-13,14-15 18-19,20-21,22-23,24-25,26-27,28-29,30-31,32-33,34-35,36-37,...58
Powered by FlippingBook