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Learning Environment

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  • Date: 12/01/2021
    Resource Category!: Research Case Study
    Making experiences and activities are rich with opportunities for mathematical reasoning that often go unrecognized by both participants and educators. Since 2015, we have been exploring this potential through the Math in the Making initiative. The work focuses particularly on children’s museums and science centers, many of which have developed ... »
  • Date: 07/08/2021
    Resource Category!: Peer-reviewed article
    Using a design-based research approach, we studied ways to advance opportunities for children and families to engage in engineering design practices in an informal educational setting. 213 families with 5–11-year-old children were observed as they visited a tinkering exhibit at a children’s museum during one of three iterations of a program posing ... »
  • Date: 06/01/2021
    Resource Category!: Peer-reviewed article
    Making as a term has gained attention in the educational field. It signals many different meanings to many different groups, yet is not clearly defined. This project’s researchers refer to making as a term that bears social and cultural impact but with a broader more sociocultural association than definitions that center making in STEM learning. ... »
  • Date: 11/22/2019
    Resource Category!: Peer-reviewed article
    In this article we explore how activity design and learning contexts can influence youth failure mindsets through a case study of five youth who described failure as sometimes a good thing and sometimes a bad thing (a perspective we characterize as Failure as Mosaic , described in the article). These youth and their descriptions of failure- ... »
  • Date: 07/18/2019
    Resource Category!: Peer-reviewed article
    We examined the conversational reflections of 248 families with 6–11‐year‐old children shortly after they visited a tinkering exhibit. Our aim was to understand the conditions of tinkering and conversational reflection that can enhance STEM learning opportunities for young children. We discuss implications for the design of tinkering and ... »
  • Date: 04/01/2019
    Resource Category!: Peer-reviewed article
    The making and tinkering movement has become increasingly mainstream over the past decade, pioneered in part through the popularity of magazines like `Make', events such as Maker Faire and DIY websites including `Instructables'. Science centres and museums have been developing their own ideas, notably the Tinkering Studio at the Exploratorium. In ... »
  • Date: 12/30/2018
    Resource Category!: Peer-reviewed article
    Making is a recent educational phenomenon that is increasingly occurring in schools and informal learning spaces around the world. In this paper we explore data from maker educators about their experiences with failure. We surveyed maker educators about how they view failure happening with youth in their formal and informal programs and how they ... »
  • Date: 11/27/2018
    Resource Category!: Peer-reviewed article
    Experiences-including museum experiences- that are packaged as stories are more likely to be remembered by both children and adults. For museum visitors, the simple act of narrating what they've done even no more than ten minutes ago can make their experience more meaningful and memorable. How connections are made between a museum experience and ... »
  • Date: 07/01/2018
    Resource Category!: Research Case Study
    This is a story about learning STEM content and practices while making objects. It is also a story about how that learning is contextualized in one young man’s disruption of racism simply by trying to learn how gears work. Our project, Investigating STEM Literacies in MakerSpaces (STEMLiMS), focuses on how adults and youth use representations to ... »
  • Date: 03/01/2018
    Resource Category!: Peer-reviewed article
    For many children, gaining access to STEM education is an uphill battle. Inequity and underrepresentation of children from marginalized communities persist. Research has pointed not only to an access opportunity gap but also to an identity gap--children from nondominant communities often do not "see" themselves in dominant STEM structures (Authors ... »

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