Maker Professional Development

Create Your Makerspace with TCEA at ISTE 2017

maker space
Educators creating in a TCEA makerspace workshop.
Written by Susan Meyer

A maker space provides students an outlet for open creativity. Join TCEA at ISTE 2017 to learn how to create or improve your maker space.

In a makerspace, an empty paper towel roll has the potential to become a musical instrument, a racetrack, a tool, or a building material. It can be a recreation of something that already exists in the world or a new invention that doesn’t yet. Likewise, a line of code on a screen can bring animated characters to life or give instructions to an industrious robot. Makers can sew, bead, adhere, connect, program, engineer, craft, and create. The only limit is the maker’s imagination.

Makerspaces give students the flexibility to problem solve without creative limitations. They provide them a safe space to fail, to learn from setbacks, and to set their own goals and measures for achievement. With this freedom, students can produce some incredible things and feel empowered by their own abilities.

Are you interested in starting a makerspace in your school, classroom, or library, but are not sure where to start? Seeing so many great ideas for makerspaces can make the concept seem exciting and rewarding…but also kind of intimidating. Join TCEA at the ISTE 2017 Conference & Expo to get a crash course in makerspaces. Whether you’re a newbie looking to dip your toe in the makerspace waters or an expert ready to refresh your established makerspace with some new ideas, this is an event you won’t want to miss.

Makerspace Mayhem

On Saturday, June 24, from 8:30 am – 3:30 pm, TCEA will be hosting a unique, hands-on makerspace workshop and interactive playground at ISTE 2017. The event is tailored to all experience levels. You’ll learn how you can make a makerspace happen even if you have little storage, a small budget, or low access to tech. Participants will get to experience a variety of maker stations while learning the ins and outs of budgeting, best practices, and getting buy-in from key stakeholders. From no-tech to high-tech, you’ll leave with detailed ideas for creating a number of different maker stations sure to please your students and align to your curriculum.

You’ll also leave with a 40-card reference book that is a ready-to-use teaching resource to implement in your makerspace right away. The reference includes activities and ideas for creating with everything from re-purposed cardboard and low-cost craft materials to robotics and coding tools. This event requires special registration. Register here.

More About ISTE 2017

This year, the ISTE Conference & Expo takes place at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio from June 25-28. At ISTE 2017, you’ll find cutting edge best practices and strategies provided by ed tech thought leaders. You’ll learn from innovative educators, key organizations, and the top ed tech companies and discover the newest technology and how to use it to shape teaching and learning.

The annual conference typically attracts over 18,000 attendees and industry representatives, including: teachers, technology coordinators, administrators, library media specialists, and policymakers. As an attendee, you’ll experience inspiring and thought-provoking keynotes, hundreds of sessions in a variety of formats, and a expo hall full of the latest and greatest in ed tech.

Register Now

If you haven’t yet planned your summer professional development, make sure to leave room for ISTE 2017. TCEA members can get a 25 percent discount on ISTE membership if they sign up by May 1. With your ISTE membership, you’ll get discounts on registration for the 2017 ISTE Conference & Expo. Learn more about registering for ISTE 2017 here.

We at TCEA hope to see you in San Antonio this summer with your maker hats on!


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About the author

Susan Meyer

Susan Meyer is the Communications Specialist at TCEA. She is the editor of TCEA’s quarterly print and digital magazine TechEdge and is a contributing writer for the TechNotes blog. Her background is in educational publishing, and, prior to working with tcea, she spent the last eight years editing and producing content for digital, educational products. Meyer is the author of over 20 books targeted for grades 5-12 on topics ranging from developing an online brand identity to creating collaborative learning experiences with digital tools.

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