Susan Klimczak's Blog

An interesting article on "Culturally responsive computing: a theory revisited"

Fellow

by Susan Klimczak -

Among the FabLearn Fellows and at the Fab Learn Conference this past October, there has been a focus on thinking about how to put youth of color, young women and youth living in families with low incomes at the center of the maker education movement. 

As part of my own research for a current project at the South End Technology Center @ Tent City, Dr. Nettrice Gaskins, the Director of the STEAM Lab at the Boston Art Academy High School, recommended I read this excellent article that she cited as part of her dissertation.  I wanted to share it with the community.  

Toward Making Change: Beyond #BlackLivesMatter (One: Introduction)

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by Susan Klimczak -

This is the first of a series of posts documenting the progression of a collaborative project at the South End Technology Center @ Tent City supported by the Harvard Graduate School of Education Dean's Equity Project.  The goal is to create a safe and creative space for high school and college youth to explore their identities and the issues that have come up for them with the #BlackLivesMatter movement through activities based on Hip Hop Culture.

Dr. Nettrice Gaskins: Recontextualizing the Makerspace & Culturally Responsive Education

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by Susan Klimczak -

At the Fab Learn Conference last weekend, I was struck that Paulo Blickstein set the tone by making a strong argument for maker education to focus on inclusion and equity even suggesting the importance of giving  "an unfair advantage to low income youth."

Creating opportunities for youth to transform their relationship with failure

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by Susan Klimczak -

A "What I am reading and thinking about" post! 

Having a positive and playful relationship to failure is an important ingredient in making!  I have some very amusing video footage of our youth discussing the process of creating a perfect pressfit cube, advising each other that it takes at least 20 failures to really understand pressfit and produce a perfect pressfit cube.  (It usually takes 4 or 5, but teenagers enjoy exageration. Smile.)

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Teach the Whole Family to Code: MIT Media Lab Family Creative Learning Guide

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by Susan Klimczak -

In my diverse and mostly low income urban community, parents of our youth teachers are sometimes fearful about having their children engage with technology.  This is because often the only technologies that they are familiar with are ones that they associate with risks and danger for their children:  facebook, video games, texting and the like.  These parents often are unfamiliar with the creative possibilities of technology that our youth teachers engage in Learn 2 Teach, Teach 2 Learn and don't know about all the satisfying careers associated with STEAM.  

“The STEM of a flower clutches beauty, but the STEM that is taught holds up a community.”

Fellow

by Susan Klimczak -

Digging out of the happy chaos at the end of a maker program is always a challenge!

I'm finishing up the last payrolls, trying to put the lab back in order after 34 youth teachers produced socially conscious inventions and hundreds of children bounced through making small projects that introduced them to the creative possibilities of STEM, as well as getting youth teachers to write thank you letters and complete reflection surveys.

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