Diane Brancazio and Justin Schmidt of the MIT Edgerton Center K12 MakerLab are both long-time Makers, teachers, and curriculum developers, now training teachers in establishing a Maker mindset in their classrooms and schools.
In May 2021, we hosted online conversations to hear educators' vision for teaching and learning, and help them figure out what they need as they get back to the classroom.
We asked Maker educators these questions about their experiences in the 2020-2021 school year:
What were your challenges?
What positives did you discover?
What new tools, practices, and knowledge did you gain?
How do you want Fall 2021 to look?
What do you need to make it happen?
Here's what we learned:
Challenges of the past year
Classroom teachers struggled with the logistics of distance learning:
New tools, practices, and self-knowledge that teachers gained
Online creative tools for students:
Online video and communication tools for teachers and students
Online tools for interactive lessons
Positives from the past year
Despite the constraints, Maker educators mentioned more pluses than minuses from this unforgettable school year. Many turned the challenges into positives!
What educators want Fall 2021 to look like:
When schools return to in-person classes, Maker educators are looking to address students’ needs for physical contact with people and objects, and their desire to be creative and expressive. They also want to include the technologies many of us learned and adopted during remote learning.
Educators are looking for: