Kind of think this is how learning is supposed to work.

We’re up to our eyeballs in designing our brand new, soon to be built, fabulous middle school. We have visited other schools, we have met with students, parents, staff members, community members, officials, and so on. We are visiting other schools tomorrow to look at kitchens. We’re trying to leave no stones unturned.

Then I was looking at our latest design documents and found myself pondering the layout of our Collaborative Learning and Innovation Center (CLIC). Some schools might have referred to this area previously as the ‘Library’. We intend to build on and enrich the basic idea of a library. One of the parts of that build is the ‘Makerspace’ area. Well it occurred to me that I knew virtually nothing about a Makerspace.

So…I did what I do when I want to learn something. Probably what a lot of people do when they want to learn something. I googled. I found Laura Fleming. Laura Fleming has a couple of books. I bought this one.

Great book, great resource!

It didn’t take me too long to hammer my way through it. Not because it is slender in its resources, import, and impact. Nope, because it’s rich and fat with resources, import, and impact.

Here’s one of the pages from which I learned today.

I like books in which I can write and scribble.

I’m now sharing the book with the fantastic principal at our middle school. I tried to tell him how much Fleming’s book brought me up to speed with my Makerspace learning, and failed utterly. He’ll figure it out himself as he reads through it. I can’t wait to talk to him when he’s done with his reading and initial Makerspace learning.

I’ve ordered two other books to flesh out my learning and thinking. It’s kind of a sickness I have, I think. I like to learn about new stuff and think about possibilities for teachers and kids.

It also occurred to me that this is how learning is supposed to go. One wants to, or has a compelling reason to, learn about something. So he finds resources…and learns. Happened to me today. Made it a great day.

Author: Jnelson

Jeff Nelson Fife School District Assistant Superintendent:Teaching-Learning-Innovation 39 years as an educator. 16 years teacher 3 years assistant principal 12 years principal 8 years Assistant Superintendent BA, Washington State University MAEd, Washington State University Previous member of AWSP Legislative Committee Previous member of UW Tacoma PEAB, Administrative Certification Established and maintained Fife’s first website for 7 years Present work includes establishing the first Teaching/Learning/Innovation department in the Fife School District. Examples of responsibilities include: teacher/administrator professional development, assessment, TPEP, curriculum/materials review, 24 credit requirement, technology levy leadership, teacher/administrator bargaining. Initiatives underway in Fife, as a result of new TLI Department: AVID, OER, Curriculum and Materials reviews, Student Perception Pilot with CSTP, Google Expedition Cofounder of Educational Internet Communications, LLC. Marketed and sold one of the first online grade checking programs in the US. Consulted with Seattle Educational Internet Company for 2 years.

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