BITlab: A #Makerspace That Connects Students to Content Learning | @ISTEofficial @BullisBITlab #makered #STEAM #STEM #edtech

Imagine if students had access to a creation library that, instead of books and periodicals, contained a wide range of equipment and tools, from glue and popsicle sticks to laser cutters and 3D printers. And what if they could use this space to create tangible artifacts depicting their understanding of a topic, while also learning how to use cutting-edge tools?

That’s the idea behind the Bullis Innovation and Technology Lab (BITlab) at Bullis School in Maryland, where each student will create at least one project before they graduate. It’s specifically designed to be a space for student exploration and creativity across all subjects.

While boosting engagement and having fun are important components of the BITlab, there is a larger question that drives project design at Bullis: How can we create projects that genuinely extend student learning?

When working with teachers, BITlab coordinator Matt Zigler’s first question is, “What are you trying to help your students understand?” This question helps to center the discussion and brainstorming around how students will show their learning through the making of the project. The final object they create should be a tangible representation of the student’s deep understanding of the topic.

Continue reading to learn more about specific project highlights spanning grades K-12 and across all subjects

* Matt Zigler is writing a book about teaching high school students in the makerspace titled Three Modes of Making; Imitation, Modification, and Innovation. Keep an eye out for its release this summer!

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