Monday, January 4, 2021

Making your #OneWord into a physical artifact

If you want to join my workshop
and learn how to create an SVG file
to help you with this challenge
let me know here and I'll send you registration link for either
OPTION 1  Thursday  January 14 at 8:30

OPTION 2. Thursday January 14 at 3:30

I've been enjoying the stream of #oneword and #oneword2021 resolutions or focus for the upcoming year and I've been thinking a lot about what my #oneword should be. I feel so much HOPE in that stream of One Words. After thinking deeply about several contenders I've picked my #oneword.


There are so many reasons I chose REGROUP  - but the main reason was that 2020 really turned out to be a year to UNGROUP that has set us up for an opportunity to REGROUP in a intentional way. As we regroup let's be inentional about keeping the best, deleting pieces that are not working,  rearranging what worked well, and even adding new elements. 

Both professionally and personally I'm reflecting on the process of regrouping.  I've been collecting articles that can encourage deeper thinking about how our schools might regroup in 2021. Devin Vodicka's  How Might We questions provide a great launching point as does Scott Muri's pledge for his school to not return to normal.  and many others from the EdSurge's 2020 series:  Vision: Reflections on Hope and Learning in a Most Challenging Year .   Thankfully my state (Vermont) has laid the groundwork for us to take our lessons learned and create opportunities for students to learn how they learn best through Flexible Pathways and Personalized Learning

I've also been taking many of the pieces of my personal life that were ungrouped in 2020 and considering how I will regroup them to in ways where I can have more intentional impact that aligns with my priorities and values.   

During the past few days I've been thinking about the many ways that I can create physical artifacts that can help me stay focused on my #OneWord.  So many possibilities come to mind - from Keychains, to T-Shirts, to Laptop Stickers to Wall Hangings.  I have so many fun tools in my mobile makerspace from cardboard cutters, to vinyl cutters, to 3D printers to laser cutters that I could use.  

No matter what I choose to make,  the process starts with turning the word into an image.  Although there are many ways to do this, the barrier I faced for many years when using my maker tools, was that I didn't have the skills to create images in the SVG format.   After years of using Bitmap images, the SVG format did not make sense to me.  Finally in 2020,  after completing a personal maker project where I was working through the loss of some very special young people in my life, I feel like I've started to develop more creative confidence creating SVG files.  This confidence with working with SVG files  has open up so many possibilities for using my maker tools. 

In 2021, one of the pieces in my REGROUP journey will be to increase opportunities for teachers and students to LEARN through CREATING and MAKING.   As I think about how I can do this, one way is to continue to invite others along in my journey. 

Therefore I'm decided to kick off the new year by inviting others to create a physical artifact of their #ONEWORD. 

You don't need fancy maker tools. Tools and supplies as simple as a cardboard cutter, copper tape, fabric, needle and thread can be used as well as fabrication tools such as Vinyl Cutters (Cricut or Silhouette), 3D printers, laser cutters, or even a scroll saw. 

What do you say?  Who wants to join me in the challenge of taking our #ONEWORD and creating or making a physical artifact?  Let's create a virtual gallery of the physical artifact we create and tag them #makered #oneword.

The process of using your hands to  take what's in your heart and head into a physical object is so powerful.  That whole process becomes a sort of ungroup and regroup process.  

As a way to kick off this #ONEWORD challenge, I'd like to help anyone who wants to learn how to turn your #ONEWORD into an SVG file from free software that you can use to create your physical artifact to join me for a free workshop.   I'll share tips for grouping letters together or preventing the middle of letters from falling out.  

Once you have your #oneword as an SVG file you can cut it from cardboard,  vinyl, wood,  fabric, acrylic as part of creating your physical artifact. 

If you want to join my workshop and learn how to create an SVG file to help you with this challenge, let me know here, and I'll send out more info after I find  out what day and time will work for most.

Oh- and a special shoutout to Downers Grove Grade School 58 for the inspiration for this challenge. 

And for a wonderful set of short intro video tutorials to Gravit, check out John Umekubo's series here starting with his BASICS tutorial below

5) Creating Laser Cut Designs using Inkscape - Getting Started
6) Creating Laser Cut Designs using Inkscape - Next Steps

Inkscape Tutorial for Laser Cutter from Washco Utah Library Makerspace


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