role of teacher

Fostering a Constructionist Learning Environment, the Qualities of a Maker-Educator

Fellow

by Christa Flores -

In previous blogs I have addressed the role of co-teaching in a maker classroom, as well as the intersection of Reggio Emilia practice and working in a makerspace in hopes of redefining the role of teacher in a Constructivist learning environment. Lately, the FabLearn cohort has also been discussing the essay written by Paulo Blikstein and Marcelo Worsley, soon to be published in Project Zero’s Makeology book. In this chapter of the book, the power of the culture of making is said to be highly dependent on the pedagogical style and attitude of the teacher. Fostering a constructionist learning environment is no small charge, as it turns out. Once established, however, this environment offers a world of learning experiences that are pitted to challenge the status quo teaching and learning we see in most schools today.

Making and the Reggio Emilia Approach: Making the Connection

Fellow

by Christa Flores -

Our task is to prepare children socially, emotionally, intellectually and morally to further the advancement of our culture: a righteous and heroic task! Countries such as the oft-cited Finland (there are three different links here), and methods such as the Montessori Method (only one link) involve would-be teachers in a rigorous selection and training process. The teacher must be a perfect observer, attuned to the interests of the student and their developmental needs, ready to deliver the gift of an appropriate learning prompt to each student or student group. The teacher must also be a skilled documentarian, documenting and assisting the child to self-document the learning process. Sufficiently thorough documentation of learning in process can be one way to lead away from direct assessment and avoid a bias toward focusing on the product or artifact.

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