Featured Resource: [VIDEO] Permission to Make: Adam Savage (KQED Education)
From classic cars to simple electronics, we have been making and tinkering with everyday objects for decades. The recent surge in DIY and Maker Culture has inspired educators to introduce garage creations to the classroom, bringing their curious students along for the ride.
Do you learn better through a hands on making process? Share something that you have made recently. What have you always wanted to learn to make? #DoNowDIY
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Over the past several years, the practice of making things has become a cultural phenomenon. Referred to as maker culture or the DIY movement — self-sufficiency through completing tasks without the aid of a paid expert (aka do it yourself) and usually involving technology and online sharing — has truly exploded, especially in the Bay Area.
Over the past couple of years though, DIY has been used more broadly to describe any activity that incorporates creative skills into making or designing something on your own. Using this definition, DIY can stand for everything from baking a cake, to decorating a bedroom, to creating handmade products like jewelry. Some also use DIY in a more technical context as it relates to making gadgets like robots, printers and other programmable devices hacked together using free software and tools found across the Web.
Maker culture is now shifting into the education arena, where instructors are implementing project-based and self-directed learning models for students to problem solve and discover learning moments throughout their inquiry process. Gever Tulley founded Tinkering School in 2005 to learn how children become competent and to explore the notion that kids can build anything, and through building, learn anything.
Dale Dougherty, founding editor and publisher of Make Magazine — and the de facto leader of the maker movement — has a vision to create a network of libraries, museums and schools with what he calls “makerspaces” that draw on common resources and experts in each community. Libraries and museums, he said, are easier places to incorporate makerspaces than schools, because they have more space flexibility and they’re creating programs to attract teens.
DIY Culture in the Classroom
As the influence of maker culture seeps into education and learning, there has been debate as to whether this cultural shift can become more prominent in formal educational institutions. Audrey Waters from Hack Education writes that “The maker movement also reflects the technological, political and economic zeitgeist: the need for a technologically skilled work force, hope for a revival of American manufacturing, concern about STEM education all the while cutting many of the programs in schools that foster these skills — arts, wood shop, metal shop, computer science — to make more room for more standardized testing.”
There is no doubt that maker is making headway, but the growing skepticism around its role in formal education, due to lack of resources and emphasis on testing, is called into question. Can schools embrace a maker movement?
ARTICLE: Microsoft Is Giving Minecraft To Schools For Free-Here’s Why (CNN Money)
Minecraft allows players to create their own two-dimensional worlds, and in this classroom, students are graded on their game design and development. See how this class uses Microsoft’s new Minecraft: Education Edition.
DIY is a community for kids to share what they do, learn new skills and meet others with the same interests. Nyancat123, a DIY user, made this stop motion video to complete a challenge for the Animator skill.
ARTICLE: The Case For A Campus Makerspace (Hack Education)
Discover why writer Audrey Watters believes in making the classroom a makerspace.
Do Next takes the online conversation to the next level: these are suggestions for ways to go out into your community and investigate how the topic featured in this Do Now impacts people’s lives. Use digital storytelling tools and social media to share your story and take action. Make sure to tag your creations with #DoNowDIY.
- Create A Stop Motion Video: Use these stop motion entries featured on DIY.org for inspiration, and create your own simple video. Share your video on Instagram or Twitter.