Earlier this month, we invited you to teach and share using our new Teaching Kit templates on webmaker.org. The goal: make it easy for educators, mentors and techies around the world to share creative ways for teaching web skills, digital literacy and making.
Here’s five creative ways our community are using the new kits:
1) Teach web skills by making something fun
That’s what Christina Cantrill‘s great new teaching kit does. Christina and her colleagues at the National Writing Project have assembled a unit full of fun activities that explore what memes are and how they work. They then encourage students to dig deeper, tracing the origin of the meme concept to Richard Dawkins’ theories of cultural knowledge and the first-ever “lolcat” photos — dating back to the 1870s!
2) Train the trainers Michelle Thorne made this teaching kit as a step-by-step guide for training other facilitators and mentors. She tested it out at a training event in Bangalore. You can remix and share it to train other facilitators, mentors and coaches for your next webmaking event or hack jam.
3) Introduce the basics of exploring, building and navigating the web Doug Walters created this teaching kit for an adult education course. Borrowing from the Web Literacy Standard, it links through to several individual activities to create a larger overall unit and lesson plan.
4) Explore online privacy issues Karen Smith, Patrick Wade and the Our Privacy Matters team have been developing a whole series of teaching activities around online privacy. Using an online documentary as starting point, their kits explore youth, identity, and online sociability. Karen is also going to be working with university students to develop a whole series of their own teaching kits this fall.
5) Send learners on a trip to Mars This kit (still a work in progress) will introduces learners to free 3D resources they can use to build their own “Mission to Mars” experience. Created by Cizzle, one of the winners from the Mozilla Ignite program, their kit is a great example of how baseline themes in Thimble can be remixed to create something that looks and feels totally unique.
This post was written by Julia Vallera, an artist and educator working with Hive NYC on youth-serving projects.
This summer, Hive NYC welcomed a unique group of six educators and mentors to our team. Hive NYC chose them from a pool of very qualified applicants that came to us through the Maker Education Initiative’s Maker Corps and National Summer Learning Association (NSLA) Summer Pathways for Innovation Teaching Fellows program. Maker Corps was created to introduce maker-oriented experiences in existing educational programs across the nation, and the NSLA Teaching Fellows aimed to gain experience teaching in informal settings (with a focus on making/doing as learning), and to develop and implement resources that align with the principles of Connected Learning as well as Common Core Standards.
NYC Schools’ Chancellor Dennis Walcott stopped by to check-out our work during the Summer Quest Maker Party at the Bronx Library Center on August 1, 2013
Together, with their unique range of skills and expertise, this dynamic team, comprised of three NYC DOE teachers and three recent graduates/makers, contributed engaging learning experiences to Hive NYC’s summer initiatives. Through the process of working together on Hive NYC’s cornerstone programs–our deep alignment with the NYC Summer Quest program and the Mozilla Maker Party campaign–they had the unique opportunity to share skills and expertise and learn so much from each other… and we learned a ton from them all.
Our Summer Maker Dream Team
Claudia D’Adamo, a 2013 graduate in Computer Science at Wheaton College (Maker Corps)
Do Hyung Kwon, a recent Architecture graduate from UC Berkeley (Maker Corps)
Alex Lee, a Materials Science & Engineering graduate student at Texas A&M University (Maker Corps)
Gina Tesoriero, an 8th grade learning specialist and STEM educator at MS 104 – Simon Baruch Middle School (NSLA Teaching Fellow)
Marie Tesi, a middle school science teacher and STEM educator at MS 390 (NSLA Teaching Fellow)
Between their collaborative efforts and the number and diversity of events they helped to facilitate, it was Hive NYC’s most productive summer yet. This team served as educators, mentors, participants and organizers, and after each event they created wonderful reflections, webpages, educational tools, curriculum and more. Continue reading →
Since 2009, the British organization Young Rewired State has brought together young people with an interest in coding for multi-day hackathons. Over the course of a weekend or more, participants as young as six or seven and up to the age of 18 work with guidance from professional developers and designers to build apps and hacks using open government data. In the U.K., YRS’s community has grown from an initial cohort of 50 to over 800 who participate in their annual week-long Festival of Code in August. This year, YRS is also expanding internationally to locations around the globe, from San Francisco to Berlin to Johannesberg. Mozilla Hive NYC and Museum of the Moving Image partnered with YRS to present the first of these international design challenges–Young Rewired State NYC–on June 29 and 30 at the Museum.
The Museum is always eager to work with Hive, and we were particularly excited about this project: Young Rewired State aligns directly with the Museum’s wider efforts to engage youth in design-based, digital media making activities that foster civic engagement, technical skill development, and, through exposure to a wider community of professional makers, career awareness. The Museum has hosted plenty of hackathons and design jams before, for teens and adults, but this bridged the gap between teen makers and professional developers in a new and inventive way, and it was our first such event to focus on open data. YRS had a half decade of experience, and we were eager to learn.
After several months of coordinated outreach, Mozilla/Hive, Young Rewired State, and the Museum recruited about 50 kids, mostly teens–nearly the same number that launched the first YRS in the U.K. back in 09–some traveling from out-of-state for the two-day challenge. On Saturday morning, they were given a simple set of parameters: in teams of four or less, create a digital something with a subset of NYC open data to present Sunday afternoon. The kids were then asked to arrange themselves based on coding experience, with novices on one side of the room and hardcore coders on the other. The rest was up to the young people.