East Central U Adopts Makerspace for Teacher Training
East Central University in Oklahoma has deployed a makerspace lab in its Department of Education to teach practicing and preservice educators how to set up and facilitate a makerspace in the classroom.
The university formally opened its new Pitsco Maker Space Lab in August 2016. Harvey Dean, founder and CEO of Pitsco Education,
is an alumnus of the university and donated the materials and tools for
the lab. This summer, a group of teachers took part in the lab's first
summer workshop, where they took on the role of students as they
brainstormed solutions to an open-ended challenge.
Maker Space Lab includes Pitsco's Invention Explore-A-Pak and other
hands-on learning kits designed by the company to help teach topics
such as physical science, engineering, aerospace, structures and
sustainable energy. The lab space itself is designed to provide
flexibility with mobile tables, chairs, whiteboards and cabinets that
can be reconfigured on the fly.
The university will use the
space to hold workshops, courses and professional development events
for both veteran and preservice teachers. "The Pitsco Maker Space kits
will be used in Education Methods Classes as well as in collaborative
activities with our area school partners," said Brenda Sherbourne, dean
of ECU's College of Education and Psychology, in a news release. "By
utilizing Maker Space products in our teacher education program we are
preparing our pre-service teachers to provide challenging curriculum
for P-12 area students."
Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.