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The Maker Movement
Transcript of The Maker Movement
Diana, Liam, Mohamed, Susan and Tina
What is the maker movement?
The Maker Movement is heavily influenced by
Do It Yourself (DIY)
thinking. It is built on the sense that all people have the creative means to
their own lives through
. Individuals are encouraged to act upon their own ideas rather than wait for others - who are considered to be
of the means - to improve their lives for them. The Maker Movement seeks to celebrate and develop
simply by providing people with the opportunity to do so.
How it all started...
"We don't just live; we make."
founded MAKE Magazine; an online and print publication of DIY and technology projects and how-tos.
In 2006, Dougherty held the first Maker Faire in San Francisco to bring makers to one place. Today, there are maker faires and maker communities all around the world.
Dougherty is often recognized as the founder of the Maker Movement.
Makerspaces are physical spaces people can go to put their innovative ideas into practice. The spaces are organized and operated by maker groups and may require a membership fee. Within these spaces, makers have access to a variety of technology and tools - out of reach of most people - that can make their innovative ideas possible.
Maker Movement and Education
o The Maker Movement is inherently educational and opportunities are provided for students to creatively build on established ideas using new innovative techniques.
o The movement democratizes innovation, creating spaces that allow and encourage unique ideas that are not monopolized by private think tanks and corporate research and development departments.
o From an educational perspective, the Maker Movement is driven by the foundational philosophy of critical pedagogy.
o Rooted in social justice and liberation theology in the Third World, critical pedagogy seeks to empower and enlighten those traditionally denied education.
o Critical pedagogy is student centred: knowledge and information is not deposited, but facilitated by educators through a partnership of teacher-student dialogue (Freire, 2006).
Critical pedagogy fosters within students conscientiousness: a sense of critical, independent, problem based learning, liberating students from an environment of intellectual control (Freire, 2006; McLaren, 1999).
Societal Impact of the Maker Movement
o Students are encouraged to think, create and innovate independently while developing practical knowledge and inquiry skills.
o Skill development is now more important than ever given the rapid pace at which technology changes and improves.
o the Maker Movement and makerspaces allow students to keep pace and be an active part of innovation rather than passively accept the innovation of others.
o Makerspaces create communities of learners. Innovators make connections and share ideas with the common purpose of personal and intellectual improvement.
However, critics of the Maker Movement suggest a number of potential negative outcomes:
o Improvement of consumer products and technology only encourages consumerism and strengthens the relationship between intellectual innovation and making money.
o What is created in Maker Spaces is trivial and impractical. Tools such as 3D printers are used for the creation of toys rather than anything of any real intellectual application (Barniskis, 2013).
o Makerspaces threaten intellectual property. Products and ideas are constantly changed and improved upon with little legal recognition of the original product or idea (Barniskis, 2013).
o Safety concerns, hazards and liability!
Teachers can adopt the maker movement based on Google’s 20% Time. This project encouraged their employees to take 20% of work time a week to work on their own personal project that was not part of their job description. This allowed for many Google employees to foster innovative projects.
To encourage the maker movement, teacher, AJ Juliani, adopted a similar concept by allowing his students to take on a project of their own (Juliani, 2012). By the end of the school year, the students had to present their new creation to the class. This is a practical way to encourage Makers in our classrooms.
"I think all kids want to change the world, and the Maker Movement and Maker ethos teaches kids that they have the power to make the world a better place” (Martinez, 2013).
Educator and Author of
Invent to Learn
A school in Illinois participated in a local business and school partnership to encourage its students to become makers. The local business proposed a problem and the students had to use different strategies to come up with a solution. There were six skills that the teachers needed to help students develop in order to solve the issue (Gerdes & Ljung, 2008):
Creativity and Innovation:
Use technology to create innovative products
Communication and Collaboration:
Students must communicate their information using blogs, Wikis, Google Docs, etc.
Research and Fluency:
Students must use technology to gather information (internet, 3D imagery, GPS technology)
Critical thinking, problem solving and decision making:
Students need to gather the information, assess it and make a decision based on the data they collected.
Students are required to understand their responsibilities towards the ethical and societal use of digital technology and show responsible behaviour.
Technology operations and concepts
Students had to learn complicated systems (i.e.Radio frequency identification tags)
To encourage the maker movement in schools, teachers first need to reevaluate the way they see creativity. According to Goodwin & Miller's (2013) article “Creativity Requires a Mix of Skills”:
1. Teachers should not see content knowledge and creativity as two separate entities, but rather as one.
2. Teachers need to ask questions that require creative thinking and problem solving skills. Rather than asking questions that Google can very quickly answer, teachers can for example ask “How could World War II have been avoided" instead of "What happened during WWII?” The first question encourages students to use their creativity to find solutions by basing themselves on the facts.
3. Asking questions using “what if” is a good approach for fostering critical thinking (Goodwin & Miller, 2013, p.82). Instead of asking “What year did Christopher Columbus land in America?” one could ask “What if Christopher Columbus had arrived in California? How would events be different?" "What if" questions will encourage students to “imagine[ing], experiment[ing], discover[ing], elaborate, test[ing] solutions, and communicate [ing] discoveries” (Goodwin & Miller, 2013, p.82).
“Engaging the community in meaningful partnerships benefits students, teachers, and community partners. Students learn valuable skills that transfer to many different career settings. The experience is transformational for students, who see their schoolwork as having meaning ” (Gerdes & Ljung, 2008, p.75).
Barniskis, S.C. (2013). Maker spaces and teaching artists.
Teacher Artist Journal
Carnow, G.A. & Martinez, S. (2013). Meet the makers: the next revolution in education
will not be televised.
Technology and Learning
, 34(3), 38(3).
Freire, Paulo. (2006). Pedagogy of the oppressed. New York: Continuum. Originally
published in 1970.
Goodwin, B. & K. Miller. (2013). Research says/ Creativity requires a mix of skills.
Creativity Now!, 70(5), 80-81, 83.
Juliani, AJ. The 20% project (likeGoogles) in my class. Retrieved February 25, 2014,
McLaren, Peter. (1999). A pedagogy of possibility: reflecting upon Paulo Freire’s politics
Sands, D. (2011).
Dale Dougherty, maker faire and 'Make' Magazine co-founder, says
DIY festival gaining momentum in Detroit
. Retrieved March 3, 2014, from http://
Google 20% Time
Option 1: Assignment Bank
Option 2: Electricity Box Game
Option 3: DIY (Create a product or solve a problem)
Links for ideas
Please remember to share your activity (and photos) on the discussion board.
Feel free to ask us any questions you may have on the Maker Movement!