Education Extravaganza at Maker Faire Bay Area 2014

Education Extravaganza at Maker Faire Bay Area 2014
Danielle Martin, Steve Davee, and Alisha Panjwani enjoy paella dinner on Friday evening before the big weekend.

At Maker Media, we like to re-invent things every once in a while, and so this year we tried a lot of new ways to reach out to teachers and schools ahead of Maker Faire.

We launched a new Teacher Team, and you’ll see hundreds of teachers getting involved in new ways, and a few of the most enthusiastic ones (I’m looking at you, Ravenswood!) bringing buses full of kids to the event via thousands of tickets we donated and discounted for schools in the Bay Area and beyond.

We sent Maker Faire out into schools through our Maker Faire Classroom Pack: Circuit Curious program. The kits reached hundreds of kids around the Bay Area. Read more here.

Yesterday, our friends at Maker Education Initiative hosted their first-ever, day-long Making Possibilities Workshop. We popped in for the afternoon Possibility Faire to share information on our programs like Maker Camp, as well as make duct tape wallets. (Read more here.)


healdsburgWe have opened up the doors of Maker Faire through Maker Connections, a series of six free, virtual field trips today and over the past five weeks. Building on the success of Maker Camp, we offered everybody, everywhere free access to and interaction with Makers via a series of six live and archived virtual field trips we launched on Friday, April 11 with viral video phenoms EepyBird and culminating today with two behind-the-scenes visits with the Maker Faire Crew and some of the makers placed in South Lot this weekend. Classrooms tuned in to ask questions live, from Carly Caprio’s 4th graders in Healdsburg to Dr. Dijanna’s third graders in Gardena. Carly’s class was inspired to build EepyBird’s Spider Web Illusion, right, and she reported back to us that “The students did uncover a lot about perception, angles, etc. when creating the illusion.  I was proud of them for creating the structure on their own.”

We also hosted our annual sneak preview for teachers, the Educators’ Meetup, onsite at Maker Faire. Read more here.

We made these changes to our lineup for students, teachers, and schools in response to visitor feedback while fulfilling our desire for a more inclusive experience for our ever-growing K-12 audience.

And we’d love to hear what changes you’d like to see in the future.

Educators who want to learn about all that’s new in what we offer to the learning community should sign up for our newsletter.

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Michelle, or Binka, makes . While at Maker Media, she oversaw publications, outreach, and programming for kids, families, and schools. Before joining Maker Media in 2007, she worked at the Exploratorium, in Mitchel Resnick’s Lifelong Kindergarten group at the MIT Media Lab, and as a curriculum designer for various publishers and educational researchers. When she’s not supporting future makers, including her two young sons, Binka does some making of her own, most often as a visual artist.

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