Online Maker Modules
In the Online Maker Modules certificate course, participants will learn a variety of makerspace tools that can be incorporated into a science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEAM) curriculum. Educators will examine the affordances and constraints of the various tools, and this de-siloed approach to education. Participants will be asked to plan ways in which the tools could be meaningfully incorporated into the classroom to leverage integrated learning with a focus on eco-social activism. The sessions will be situated within a production pedagogies framework, so participants understand the pedagogy and best practices associated with the tools.
The course's five online modules can be completed at the participant's own pace. Each session will be broken up into theoretical readings, media that can be used to become more familiar with each of the makerspace tools, and assignments/activities associated with each weekly tool. The weekly sessions include:
Module 1 - Introduction to Digital Making - May 2017
To be literate in the 21st century, learners of all ages need to be able to use, critique and produce across a wide range of media forms and formats. We need to design, develop and evaluate new pedagogical models for working with existing and ever-emerging technologies in order to better prepare our students, teachers and future teachers to learn and teach in a digital age. A critical makerspace is a place where learners of all ages can congregate to design, engineer and fabricate digitally enhanced products of all kinds, and explore the uses of digital technologies in general, including mobile devices, social media, apps and games, 3D printing and digital circuits. In this module, participants are introduced to the concept of production pedagogies and, more specifically, maker culture. They examine how the do-it-yourself (DIY) movement gave rise to makerspaces and 'hacklabs', and explore the social and cultural underpinnings of traditional and digital making.
Module 2 - Electronics - July 2017
Circuits are part of the Ontario curriculum, so why not teach them in a hands-on and meaningful way? Students can learn about circuits from pictures in a textbook or they can actually create them! A problem-based learning or constructionist pedagogy has the potential not only to facilitate long-term comprehension of challenging concepts, but it also has the power to deeply engage students in the learning process. Learners can be creative, use their problem-solving skills and collaborate with peers to build something for or connected to the real world. In this module, participants will be introduced to four different circuit tools:
- Chibitronics: sticker circuit kit
- Makey Makey: circuit-maker kit that allows the user to interact with his/her computer in creative ways
- LittleBits: magnetic, snapable electronic building blocks for creating unique circuits
- Arduino: a programmable circuit board
Participants will go through a variety of beginner, intermediate and advanced tutorials to become familiar with the tools and their various capabilities. Once the participants have gained a solid understanding of the tools, they will then complete one or more of the assignments connected to this module. Prior to beginning this module, the participants will have read one or more academic articles about electronic circuits and answered comprehension and higher-order questions to prepare them for use with the tool and the pedagogical implications and affordances of the tools.
Module 3 - Wearable Technology - September 2017
Participants will become familiar with wearables, specifically e-textiles, and their benefits in education through a number of text and multimedia-based resources. They will be given the opportunity to explore self-made e-textile tools, as well as e-textile toolkits, such as the Lilypad Arduino. Students will be expected to demonstrate knowledge by completing written and hands-on activities either on their own, or by coming in and using the resources of the STEAM 3D Lab.
Module 4 - 3D Printing - November 2017
Participants will be introduced to the use of three-dimensional printing technologies and its application in the classroom. Additionally, they will be able to explore their own use of 3D-printing technologies through the completion of module activities.
Module 5 - Coding/Gaming/Programmable Robots - January 2018
This module is broken down into three sections. It allows for the exploration of coding, gaming and use of programmable robots. The module is written in a way that encourages participants to work on and build a variety of skills over the duration of the module. Participants are first introduced to the education research on the three sub-topics—coding, gaming and programmable robots —and then asked to answer a variety of comprehension and high-order thinking questions. The readings are meant to frame the various tools, pedagogy and tutorials the participants are then meant to use, understand and complete. The participants are then are required to complete one or more assignment for each sub-topic.
Each module is $125 plus HST - a certificate will be awarded upon completion of all five modules.