Summer is a time to re-energize and have some time for new learning in a more relaxed atmosphere. That’s everything I love about summer reading except that the location can and be the beach or the deck. Set your sights on something you are interested in, get a big set of post it notes and away you go.
This summer, I am recommending two reads to reinforce the notion of the “Maker Mindset.”
Both books, while not published this year, are new enough to speak to the notion of making embedded in curriculum and in school culture more completely than a room called a “Maker Space” ever could be. That is not to say that having a makerspace in any facility that you educate in is not a great bonus but without a leading edge, expensive maker space, any educator can still advance the notion of making in any environment.
The first book is “Free to Make: How the Maker Movement is changing our schools, our jobs, and our minds” by Dale Dougherty with Ariane Conrad. Beginning with Chapter 1, “We are all Makers,” this book, published in 2016, gives a generous overview of the maker movement and some specifics about how it fits in education and more generally, how it is changing the real world. Chapter 7 specifically addresses the nature and conditions needed to adopt a “maker mindset.” This book is a quick read to give educators a great foundation in what maker is and what is looks like within each community.
The second book is by Edmonton’s own, George Couros, “The Innovator’s Mindset: Empower learning, unleash talent, and lead a culture of creativity.” This book speaks directly to educators no matter what stage they are at in embracing the maker movement. He addresses, because of his own experience, just how difficult it is to lead a revolution in a school system. However, the information contained here will give educators much to talk and think about. Many questions will be addressed, like how to create meaningful learning while having innovative students and educators leading the way.
Have a great summer and allow these two great books to help inform your practice in September.
Both books are currently being catalogued and will shortly be available in the Doucette Library.