Part of a larger project sponsored by the National Science Foundation and entitled “Infusing Learning Sciences Research into Digital Fabrication in Education and the Makers’ Movement”, FabLearn Fellows brings together experienced educators from all over the world to contribute to research about “makers” culture and digital fabrication in education.

Background

Despite the recent popularity of the maker movement and fab labs in education, most teachers work in isolation, cut off from other practitioners doing similar projects, as well as learning sciences researchers. One of the main objectives of the fellows program is to bring researchers and practitioners together to help bridge these gaps. By bringing together educators from all over the world and connecting them to researchers in the field, we hope fellows will learn from each others' experiences, share these lessons with their local community, and, together, create educational materials for the rest of the teaching community.

Goal

  1. To create a breadth of open-source resources to assist other practitioners.
  2. To facilitate Fellows improving their own practice.
  3. To begin to bridge the gap between learning sciences researchers and practitioners.

Process

The 2015 FabLearn Fellows cohort is a diverse group of 18 educators and makers. They represent eight states and five countries, and work with a wide range of ages at schools, museums, universities and non-profits. Throughout the course of the fellowship, the fellows developed resources, contributed to curriculum development, and interfaced with a variety of researchers. Likewise, they came together multiple times a month for group webinars.