Since our inception in 2012, Maker Ed has been creating change on a national scale by leading and disseminating work focused on maker education. Our approach has been to build community, capacity, and a collection of curated resources. Over ten years we have directly worked with nearly 10,000 educators and indirectly impacted hundreds more educators and an estimated five million young people. We have done this in the following ways:
Professional Development: Provided training and support opportunities (in person and online) for formal and informal educators to develop skills to integrate making into their current settings and prepare them to train others in their local communities. Our approach to professional development is designed for educators to actively participate from the perspectives of their learners as a way to reflect on their own practice, facilitation, and design of maker-centered experiences. This approach allows educators to experience, adopt, adapt, and develop liberatory teaching practices enabling them to build culturally responsive, anti-racist, rehumanizing learning spaces. Over the past 10 years, we hosted an estimated 60 professional development sessions in addition to 30 learning communities, each of which had between 6 and 36 facilitated learning experiences.
Network and Community: Fostered a robust network of maker educators through online community, virtual hangouts, in-person convenings, professional learning communities, and more. There is a need for virtual and in-person spaces for like-minded individuals to come together and support each other to learn and grow. We helped form connections within organizations, between organizations, in specific geographical regions, nation-wide, and internationally. This work has taken many forms over the years, from informal gatherings like Maker Educator Meetups to hosted events like our workshops, learning communities, and the Maker Educator Convening.
Capacity Building: Delivered a combination of seed-grants, fundraising support, and capacity building personnel and volunteers through various programs such as Young Makers, Maker Corps, Maker VISTA, Making Spaces, and Maker Promise.
Resources: Shared best practices for maker education and further field-wide understanding through research efforts. Our Resource Library hosts a curated selection of resources from the community and we have created resources through efforts like Ask a Maker Educator, Learning in the Making, and Online Learning modules. To push the field of maker-centered learning forward we have participated in research projects (Open Portfolios and Beyond Rubrics) and published in various ways.
Click the sidebar (on mobile, at the top of this page) to view, in-depth our impact & history between 2012 and 2022:
The video below tells the story of how Maker Ed’s work reached one young person and her siblings. For more stories about Maker Ed’s work, check out our blog.