I'm participating in a MOOC (Massively Open Online Course) put on by Mozilla called "Teach the Web" for the next couple of months. It seems like a good way to get exposed to new tools and new approaches to teaching digital literacies to our youth at the Academy and beyond.
This week's assignment is to blog about one of several prompts. The one I have chosen is :
What is the advantage of making as learning over traditional “forward facing” pedagogies? Disadvantages?
As someone coming at the Maker Movement as mostly an outsider, I'm perhaps not the best person to respond to this prompt. That said, I have implemented a number of maker experiences in youth programs I have run, and done a small number of Maker / DIY / craft projects of my own over the years.
One of the advantages of making as learning that I observe is the kind of "lean in" engagement I experience and see in young people when doing a maker project. They are totally focused and on-task when they have decided to create something, to the exclusion of all outside input and realities. They get to be in a "flow state" where time is experienced differently, and the entire universe collapses into the one activity and goal.