Educators problem-solve the complexities of introducing a new concept to students by participating in new workshops centered around STEAM and maker movement practices.
The 20 educators who signed on to participate in the Western Pennsylvania Writing Project’s 21st Century Notebooking Inquiry Project, a Grable-sponsored exploration into paper circuitry, dove straight into “doing,” trying out firsthand what they intended to teach others. The group represented various contexts: public, private, and charter, and nearby Latrobe, Hempstead and Franklin Regional districts. Paper circuitry, at its most basic, involves tinkering with copper tape, sticker LED lights, coin-shaped batteries, paper, pens, and art supplies to design and compose written texts that light up.
This group, and a larger group of invited visitors, experienced his or her own “lightbulb moment” during a July 2015 two-day workshop held at the Writing Project’s four-week Summer Institute for Teachers, which helps teachers across grade levels and disciplines strengthen their literacy practice. The paper circuitry workshop was led by San Francisco-based David Cole, of NEXMAP. NEXMAP, which stands for “New experimental music, art, production,” is a transformative educational non-profit organization that works to create innovative opportunities for teachers and students.
When you write for children (or read children's books) keep in mind the power gap as described by author Mitail Perkins. She thinks about how much power is between herself and her main character, among others.
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