Sunday, March 6, 2022

Design Experiences for Learning Through Creating and Making

On the 2022 March is for Making Day 6  I would like to share a refresh to the Create Make Learn  framework for designing LEARNING Through Creating and Making. 

The INSPIRE phase is a time to explore something in a way that motivates the learner to create and make something meaningful.  It is based on the belief that  MOTIVATION is the foundation of all meaningful learning.  


Showcase some inspiring examples.
Set up some stations for learners to explore that lead to wonder and curiosity.
Consider a short activity that leaves the learner wanting more.

Once a learner is inspired, it is helpful to take some time for the learner to create confidence with new tools and processes. Short tutorials or skill building activities introduce the learner to new tools or skills. This could take the form of a smaller teacher lead project or self directed resources where the learner can practice their new skill.

Combine inspiration with a dose of confidence and your learner is ready to Make Something Meaningful.

What does it mean to make something meaningful. A colleague, Michael Pope, uses this criteria with his students.

  • Solves a problem

  • Helps us when we need it

  • Benefits others

  • Completes an objective that it was designed for

  • Reminds you of something important

  • Has personal meaning

  • Evokes emotion

  • Looks nice

  • Takes effort to make

  • Something you want to do

Here's what that looked like for a group of of 5th graders at Mallets Bay Elementary School.

After setting up a display of musical sunflowers for students to explore they were inspired to learn to code. I lead a 90 minute session introducing the Makey Makey circuit board and some basic coding skills using Scratch (by MIT).

During the next few weeks a group of 10 students created an interactive Fall display for their school open house during CHOICE time.

What would you or your students aspire to make as a meaningful making project? How might you inspire them and prepare them with the confidence they need to succeed?

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