|Exploring the Maker Marble Run|
That first year, Tech Fest was a huge community success, accomplishing much more than we had hoped in building positive culture around blended learning and technology integration. Parents did walk away with valuable insight to the use of digital curriculum and tools, but they also learned from and alongside their children. Our students had a chance to learn from and alongside peers across grade levels as well, generating excitement for the years of learning on the horizon. Here is a quick step-by-step guide to putting on such an event...
Step 2 - In a shared document, create a map for the event which includes a list of rooms and the beginning brainstorm of tinkering spaces so that other teachers have an understanding of the hands-on nature of the activities.
Step 3 - Share the document with other teachers to have them signup to facilitate a station. Include a table with the columns for tool/app/activity name, description, and student helpers. Have teachers engage students as the leaders of these spaces.
Step 4 - Communicate and broadcast. Spread the word about the event and have parents join in the fun. We run our event after school with high attendance, but if this time is not conducive to parent attendance for your school, try to select a time that is. Participation is key.
|"Dance Dance Revolution" Circuit Controller|
When it comes together, STEM Fest gives the appearance of being a complicated event because there are so many wonderful spaces to explore. However, because of the collaborative prep and the goal of teachers facilitating exploration rather than leading workshops, the workload is light on the teachers. STEM Fest has quickly become a highlight of our academic year and a great way to build positive culture and shared understanding of our blended learning program.