PI: Paulo Blikstein
In this Cyberlearning: Transforming Education EAGER project, the PI proposes a research program and set of events for educators, policy makers, students, designers, researchers, and makers to present, discuss, investigate, and learn about digital fabrication in education. Digital fabrication and “making” is a new chapter in the process of bringing powerful ideas and expressive media to schoolchildren. Yet the making that happens in classrooms is usually disconnected from what is known about promoting learning from such making. The PI is organizing a series of activities aimed at better understanding what is needed so that teachers will be better able to use making activities to promote learning and what research and development needs to be done to meet those needs. Activities include (1) a conference as a venue for stakeholders (including educators, students, researchers, and others) to present, discuss, and learn about digital fabrication, the culture around it, and what is known about learning from making; (2) a summer institute that would help teachers deepen their fabrication skills and learn more about learning and assessment; (3) a research summit to share findings, receive feedback, and develop collaborations; and (4) a fellow program to support teachers in activity planning and curriculum development. Throughout, the PI and team will be taking notes and convening discussions with an eye toward formulating a research agenda around promoting learning in classrooms in the context of design and fabrication activities.