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Jim Tiffin Jr

Design Thinking 3: Composting Prototypes on Vimeo - 2 views

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    How failed ideas make the next ideas you grow in your garden richer. HT @MeghanCureton
Jim Tiffin Jr

Feedback In Lieu of Grades - LiveBinder HT @JoyKirr - 0 views

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    Joy Kirr's incredible collection of inquiry/research around feedback as a replacement for grades.
Jim Tiffin Jr

Maker Empowerment Revisited | Agency by Design - 2 views

  • The big idea behind the concept of maker empowerment is to describe a kind of disposition—a way of being in the world—that is characterized by seeing the designed world as malleable, and understanding oneself as a person of resourcefulness who can muster the wherewithal to change things through making.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Two huge ideas here: 1) Recognizing the world as malleable 2) Ability of the person(s) to change that world - aka agency.
  • The concept of maker empowerment is meant to be somewhat broader than the label of maker. It certainly includes maker-types—i.e., hackers, DIYers, and hobbyists—but it also includes people who may not define themselves as wholly as makers, yet take the initiative to engage in maker activities from time to time.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Maker empowerment is different from being labeled as a maker. Traditional makers are included in maker empowerment, but it is meant to also include the people that take the initiative to participate in maker activities from time to time.
  • We teach art, or history, or auto mechanics not solely to train practitioners of these crafts, but to help all students develop the capacity to engage with world through the lenses of these disciplines—even if not all students will become artists or historians or auto mechanics. The concept of maker empowerment aims for this same breadth.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Hugely big key idea right here!
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  • Maker Empowerment (v2): A sensitivity to the designed dimension of objects and systems, along with the inclination and capacity to shape one’s world through building, tinkering, re/designing, or hacking.
  • one of the main purposes of the Agency by Design project, which is to understand how maker activities can develop students’ sense of agency or self-efficacy.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      A good reminder.
  • maker empowerment is a dispositional concept. That is, rather than simply naming a set of technical skills, it aims to describe a mindset, along with a habitual way of engaging with the world.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Another hugely big idea right here!
  • the research I’ve just described wasn’t conducted with the disposition toward maker empowerment in mind. So we don’t know if the findings about sensitivity transfer.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      FYI...
  • People we label as open-minded tend to have a distinctive and dependable mindset that flavors their engagement with the world:
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      What follows is a good example of how dispositions "flavor" the way people interact with their world.
  • Through a series of rather elaborate experiments, we were able to show that the contribution of these three elements—ability, inclination, sensitivity—could indeed be individually distinguished in patterns of thinking and that a shortfall in any of the three elements would block cognitive performance.
  • It turns out that the biggest bottleneck in behavior—in other words, the shortfall that most frequently prevents inclination, ability, and sensitivity from coalescing into sustained cognitive activity—is a shortfall of sensitivity. In other words, at least in terms of critical and creative thinking, young people don’t follow through with these habits of mind not because they can’t (ability), and not because they don’t want to (inclination), but mainly because they don’t notice opportunities to do so.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      THIS MIGHT BE THE BIGGEST KEY POINT IN THE ENTIRE POST!!!!
  • This doesn’t mean that young people’s inner detection mechanisms are woefully flawed. Rather, sensitivity has everything to do with the saliency of cues in the environment. If an environment doesn’t have strong cues toward certain patterns of behavior—or actually contains counter-cues—it can be pretty hard for those patterns of behavior to be cued up.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      THEY JUST KEEP COMING!!! :-)
  • the maker movement can empower people to shift from being passive consumers of their world to being active producers or collaborators.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Again referring to a personal sense of agency.
  • As the maker movement continues to infiltrate mainstream education, a dispositional analysis of maker empowerment might serve as a similarly useful tool.
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    "The big idea behind the concept of maker empowerment is to describe a kind of disposition-a way of being in the world-that is characterized by seeing the designed world as malleable, and understanding oneself as a person of resourcefulness who can muster the wherewithal to change things through making."
Jim Tiffin Jr

C-Sketching - YouTube - 0 views

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    "demonstration of C-Sketching, a complement to brainstorming and mind mapping -- combines ideas from those earlier steps into full concepts. Focuses on graphical representation, accessing a different part of the brain"
Jim Tiffin Jr

Your Team Is Brainstorming All Wrong - 2 views

  • demonstrate that groups that use Osborn’s rules of brainstorming come up with fewer ideas (and fewer good ideas) than the individuals would have developed alone.
  • There are several reasons for this productivity loss, as academics call it. For one, when people work together, their ideas tend to converge. As soon as one person throws out an idea, it affects the memory of everyone in the group and makes them think a bit more similarly about the problem than they did before. In contrast, when people work alone, they tend to diverge in their thinking, because everyone takes a slightly different path to thinking about the problem.
  • Early in creative acts it’s important to diverge, that is, to think about what you are doing in as many ways as possible. Later, you want to converge on a small number of paths to follow in more detail.
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  • Many techniques use a structure like this. For example, in the 6-3-5 method, six people sit around a table and write down three ideas. They pass their stack of ideas to the person on their right, who builds on them. This passing is done five times, until everyone has had the chance to build on each of the ideas. Afterward, the group can get together to evaluate the ideas generated.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      The 6-3-5 technique summarized.
  • allow individual work during divergent phases of creativity and group work during convergent phases.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Here is the key to the most productive brainstorming techniques.
  • First, it’s hard for people to describe spatial relationships, so any solution that requires a spatial layout is better described with pictures than with words. Second, a large amount of the brain is devoted to visual processing, so sketching and interpreting drawings increases the involvement of those brain regions in idea generation. Third, it is often difficult to describe processes purely in words, so diagrams are helpful.
  • It’s important that groups have time to explore enough ideas that they can consider more than just the first few possibilities that people generate.
  • Many brainstorming sessions involve people talking about solutions. That biases people toward solutions that are easy to talk about. It may also lead to solutions that are abstract and may never work in practice.
  • a combination of drawing and writing is ideal for generating creative solutions to problems
  • t is often important to spend time agreeing on the problem to be solved. A whole round of divergence and convergence on the problem statement can be done before giving people a chance to suggest solutions. 
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Wonder if there is a place for this in our HMW work?
  • To develop stronger ideas, you need to manage the conversation so that the team doesn’t converge on a solution before everyone hears what others are thinking.
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    "Early in creative acts it's important to diverge, that is to think about what you are doing in as many ways as possible. Later, you want to converge on a small number of paths to follow in more detail."
Jim Tiffin Jr

Brainswarming: Because Brainstorming Doesn't Work - HBR Video - 0 views

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    HBR video outlining a idea generating technique called Brainswarming. Putting goals at the top, and resources at the bottom, and letting possibilities converge.
Jim Tiffin Jr

Mastery Transcript Consortium - 0 views

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    "The Mastery Transcript Consortium (MTC) is a collective of high schools organized around the development and dissemination of an alternative model of assessment, crediting and transcript generation. The MTC hopes to change the relationship between preparation for college and college admissions for the betterment of students."
Jim Tiffin Jr

A Plan to Kill High School Transcripts … and Transform College Admissions - 0 views

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    Top private high schools start campaign to kill traditional transcripts and change college admissions
Jim Tiffin Jr

Building A Tinkering Mindset In Young Students Through Making | MindShift | KQED News - 0 views

  • the physical space for tinkering matters much less than the mental space that you create for young makers.
  • To be effective tinkerers, students need to achieve a state of mind in which they are primed to play and make joyful discoveries.
  • telling a group of little kids that it’s okay to make mistakes is not an effective way to deliver your message. The droning voice of the teachers in the Peanuts cartoons springs to mind! To get kids to internalize your message and truly take it to heart, you have to show them in a wide variety of ways what you really mean.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Like the pHail Boards and the FailUp Zone.
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  • Barney Saltzberg’s Beautiful Oops. This short book features mistakes repackaged as something awesome! For example, a torn piece of paper becomes the smile on an alligator. Young children respond to the simplicity of the “mistakes” and the delightful revelation of the reworked mistake into something beautiful and surprising.
  • Modeling that it really is okay to make mistakes is vital.
  • I let students see me flustered and then (hopefully) recovering. I invite them to help me diagnose what went wrong, which they LOVE.
  • Taking public risks and making public mistakes not only helps normalize mistake making, it inspires enthusiasm for collectively problem-solving and collaborating.
  • Posting quotations about or pictures of mistakes can go a long way toward reminding kids that you’re serious about the value of mistakes.
  • Failure and discovery are so closely linked, so connected and interrelated, that it is very hard to distinguish between them, especially when failure leads directly to discovery and vice versa.
  • To help students understand the messy process of creation, I ask students to track their progress during any project (much more about this in chapter 6). Tracking a project’s progress helps illuminate the many mistakes along the way.
  • Peer-to-peer sharing also opens the door for collaboration and collective problem-solving when a student is unsure of how to move past an obstacle.
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    Article summarizing ways to encourages students to think of mistakes as learning opportunities.
Jim Tiffin Jr

What Are Micro-Credentials, And Why Are They So Exciting? - 2 views

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    Love how these badges are focused on a teacher's pedagogy and philosophy of maker-centered experiences, instead of discrete skills like 3D printing.
Jim Tiffin Jr

'Maker' movement inspires hands-on learning | The Seattle Times - 0 views

  • Tinkering is being promoted on college campuses from MIT to Santa Clara University, as well as in high schools and elementary schools.
  • The blending of technology and craft in tools like 3-D printers and laser cutters has made it possible for ordinary people to make extraordinary things. And many ordinary people, living as they do, more and more in their heads and online, are yearning to do something with their hands.
  • Constructionist Approach
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      This is the term that we are missing in our current MDE nomenclature!
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  • Yes, tinkering is now a pedagogy.
  • “You’re exploring creativity, you’re exploring design thinking, you’re developing a sense of persistence,” she says. Building something new requires planning, trying and, yes, failing, and then trying again. “These are incredibly important mind-set for today’s world,” she says.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Music to my ears!
  • talks excitedly about students who have designed child prostheses. “That’s what they’re going to remember their entire life,” she says. “They aren’t going to remember sitting in an electronics lecture.”
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      It is about creating experiences that help students see the world as a malleable place.
  • Alexandra Garey, who graduated from Rutgers last year, credits tinkering with changing the course of her studies, and life: “I went from somebody who was majoring in Italian and European studies to someone who was designing and prototyping products and realizing any product that came into my head.”
  • “U.S. schools are very good at finding the brain-smart people,” he says. “They are also very good at finding the best athletes.” But they are not so good at finding and nurturing people who, he said, describing himself, think with their fingers.
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    A fabulous article full of stories about the impact of maker-centered learning experiences, and the growing number of places that provide them - elementary schools, high school, colleges, public. Perhaps most gratifying is the use of distinctly maker-centered AND educational terminology in the same article. A great sign of things to come!
Jim Tiffin Jr

Pedagogy of Play | Project Zero - 0 views

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    A new (2016) research project coming out of Harvard. With play a component of the motivation cycle for innovators, this growing body of work may be worth following.
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    A new (2016) research project coming out of Harvard. With play a component of the motivation cycle for innovators, this growing body of work may be worth following.
Jim Tiffin Jr

So You Want to Be a Better Presenter and Pitcher? The Power of the Education 'Ignite Ta... - 1 views

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    Excellent little article on Ignite Sessions. It explains what they are, shares some examples, and talks about how to adapt them for schools and students. HT @ransomtech
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    Excellent little article on Ignite Sessions. It explains what they are, shares some examples, and talks about how to adapt them for schools and students. HT @ransomtech
Jim Tiffin Jr

Project-Based Learning Through a Maker's Lens | Edutopia - 5 views

  • A Maker is an individual who communicates, collaborates, tinkers, fixes, breaks, rebuilds, and constructs projects for the world around him or her.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      A nice list-style definition of a Maker.
  • A Maker, re-cast into a classroom, has a name that we all love: a learner.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      True, but (sadly) the converse is not always the case in some classrooms: A maker may always be a learner, but a learner is not always a maker.
  • A Maker, just like a true learner, values the process of making as much as the product.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Equality of these two ideas, process and product, is a value held by a Maker.
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  • Making, especially to educators and administrators unfamiliar with it, can seem to lack the academic rigor needed for a full-fledged place in an educational ecosystem.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Only in educational settings where content knowledge is deemed the most important indicator of learning.
  • With practice, the students can frame the questions themselves.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Essential when you are trying to develop agency in students.
  • Once completed, the project becomes less of a daily race to fulfill lesson plans and more of a quest to document your students' growing capabilities.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      This reflective documentation process should be something that both teacher AND student are doing. The student point-of-view should be written for the benefit of the student, not the teacher. The teacher should coach this process for the student so that the monitoring of growth is seen as a value for the student. The teacher documentation should also inform the student as to their growth, but the information can be used for more "teacherly" purposes as well, such preparing for future activities or intentional pairings of students in the early phases of the PBL unit.
  • model it yourself first
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Always let your students see you, the teacher, as a learner - first and foremost!
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    The messy, hands-on Maker classroom is perfect for a PBL unit when the teacher is willing to collaborate, tinker, fix, break, and rebuild alongside students. Some fundamental elements to consider in the designing of a maker-centered project, but not as absolutes. It is important to realize that any project taken on in a maker-centered classroom is, by definition, a PBL experience.
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    Fabulous piece about the myriad connection among PBL and Maker. And your commentary is so helpful and provocative. Thank you!
Jim Tiffin Jr

7 Questions to End Your Week With | Hack Life - 1 views

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    A simple and rich collection of prompts intended to facilitate regular and purposeful reflection. This blog post explains the questions themselves, and the intention behind them. Each question, or step, can be summarize as follows: 1) Observe 2) Reflect 3) Focus 4) Be Productive 5) Have Courage 6) Cleanse 7) Begin Anew HT to @boadams1 for sharing this with me as part of an experiment with MVPS leaders to encourage shared reflection practices.
Jim Tiffin Jr

DIY Woodworking Projects and Plans| Ana White - 0 views

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    Simple, and incredibly inspirational, projects for the DIY woodworker. A sortable catalog of projects for a variety of skill levels, including ones that kids and novices could do. Many have plans included with them! Perfect for incorporation into maker-centered classrooms at a variety of educational levels.
Jim Tiffin Jr

The Maker Directory - 1 views

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    The Maker Directory was developed to help makers and makerspaces find the resources they need quickly and catalog them all in one place.
Jim Tiffin Jr

Let 'Em Out! The Many Benefits of Outdoor Play In Kindergarten | MindShift | KQED News - 0 views

  • With no explicit math or literacy taught until first grade, the Swiss have no set goals for kindergartners beyond a few measurements, like using scissors and writing one’s own name. They instead have chosen to focus on the social interaction and emotional well-being found in free play.
  • With many parents and educators overwhelmed by the amount of academics required for kindergartners — and the testing requirements at that age  — it’s no surprise that the forest kindergarten, and the passion for bringing more free play to young children during the school day, is catching on stateside.
  • “So much of what is going on and the kind of play they do, symbolic play, is really pre-reading,” Molomot said. “It’s a very important foundation for reading.
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  • Donnery notices that the gross motor skills of many of her kindergartners are underdeveloped, noting that usually means that fine motor skills are also lacking. “Developing those gross motor skills is just critical, can impact so much of later learning,” she said.
  • Scenes of rosy-faced children building forts in the snow are presented in sharp contrast to the academic (and mostly indoor) kindergarten in New Haven, Connecticut, where a normal day is packed full of orderly activities: morning meeting, readers’ workshop, writers’ workshop, a special activity (like art, gym, and music), lunch and recess, storytime, “choice” (a fancy word for play), math centers, then closing meeting.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      I would like to see this movie.
  • You’d be surprised at the importance of play.
  • lacking in the attention needed to learn, with more than 10 percent of the school population diagnosed with some kind of attention disorder.
  • occupational therapist Angela Hanscom opined in the Washington Post that there’s good reason our kids are so fidgety: more and more students come to class without having enough core strength and balance to hold their bodies still long enough to learn.
  • “In order for children to learn, they need to be able to pay attention. In order to pay attention, we need to let them move.”
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      But this has to be more than just a wiggle stool or yoga ball... HMW get greater movement into Kindergarten? (and it need not just be in the Kindergarten classroom)
  • A recent study by psychologists at the University of Colorado shows an even stronger reason for free play: children who experienced more undirected free play showed signs of stronger executive function, a strong predictor of success in school. “The more time that children spent in less-structured activities,” wrote researchers, “the better their self-directed executive functioning.”
  • Reading and recess are important enough that we need to do both.
  • While this kind of adult-led movement is a far cry from the nearly unstructured free play of a forest kindergarten, it does serve the school’s purpose of high academic standards for their kindergartners, in hopes this prepares them for future academic success.
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Note that it says "hope"...
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    Article contrasting two different approaches to Kindergarten - one outdoor-based and one indoor-based. Full of links to the research regarding the claims made in the article. Additionally, more language around executive function, and its importance for students, is used.
Jim Tiffin Jr

Go play! It's the key to developing executive function - Hanna Perkins Center for Child... - 0 views

  • “executive function,” the ability to self-regulate, the measurement of which turns out to be a better indicator of success in school than the results of an IQ test. Kids with good self-regulation skills are better able to control their emotions, resist impulsive behavior, and become self-disciplined and self-controlled.
  • how do we reconcile today’s anxious parents and the highly structured environment with our children’s need for unstructured, self-regulated play?
    • Jim Tiffin Jr
       
      Key part of this highlight: unstructured and self-regulated
  • The primary requirement for unsupervised play is uninterrupted stretches of time
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  • Even the youngest children are quite capable of entertaining, even educating, themselves.
  • encourage complex imaginative play by offering simple props and play ideas, but then withdraw so the children can plan their own scenarios and act them out.
  • your child is spending precious time at the activity that children need most and love best: playing independently and imaginatively
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    Though this post is written for parents, there are actions and ideas here that teachers can act upon.  The importance of play and its benefits are becoming more and more apparent - plus research is supporting it. Note to self: More research on executive function, and ways of building it in schools, needs to be done. HT: Jackie Gerstein
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