Over the last few years, stakeholders across the education landscape have grown more and more excited about maker learning and its potential to provide authentic and meaningful learning experiences to help students build skills to support them throughout their lives and careers. Since you’ve signed the Maker Promise, you probably count yourself among them. At the same time, we, like many educators, are concerned that maker learning experiences are not being offered to all students, and that many youth and adults do not feel like they belong in the maker community because of their gender, ethnicity, or economic status. If we are to truly fulfill the promise of maker learning for all young people, we must all be deliberate in how we design maker learning programs and engage with everyone to invite and support them to participate.

This spring, a team of researchers from Drexel University’s Excite Center emphasized, in their report Making Culture, that “The greatest potential impact of education makerspaces, however, lies not in the equipment or procedures of making, but rather in the culture they enable, nurturing and promoting learning through creation, collaboration, and individual agency (control, autonomy, and choice).” Over the next weeks, months, and beyond, we will be offering several new resources and opportunities to help you create a culture of making that is accessible and inviting for all learners to help reach the full potential for the maker learning programs you participate in and support.

We are excited to share the second in our series of infographics to support educators to bring research-backed practices to their students by highlighting key research into maker learning. In this graphic we cite the previously mentioned Making Culture report, alongside a seminal paper from researchers at The Exploratorium that calls out the importance of designing culturally relevant maker learning experiences that stem from the rich cultures of making that diverse students may already be a part of.

You may also have seen that creating inclusive cultures for maker learning is very present in the agenda for the 4th Annual Maker Educator Convening later this month in San Jose. We hope to see many of you there! For those who cannot attend in person, we are pleased to be able to offer live streaming of both the opening keynote and plenary panel session on making as a tool for social justice.

Maker Educator Convening Keynote Session 
Friday, October 19, 2018 @ 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm EDT
Register here to attend the livestream

Maker Ed Plenary: Making as a Tool of Social Justice
Saturday, October 20, 2018 @ 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm EDT

Register here to attend the livestream