Engaging Students in Creative Learning Experiences

Here’s an interview with Mitchel Resnick, the LEGO Papert Professor of Learning Research and head of the Lifelong Kindergarten at the MIT Media Lab, on 28 April 2015, 10:00am published in Innovate My School| Social Media

[As seen in the October 2014 edition of Innovate My School]

Mitchel Resnick is a LEGO Papert Professor of Learning Research and the head of the Lifelong Kindergarten group at the MIT Media Lab. He led the research group that developed the ‘programmable brick’, and we’re delighted to welcome him to our Twinterview to explore how new technologies can engage people in creative learning experiences.

Mitchel – it’s the start of a new academic year, and the excitement around implementing technology in the classroom continues to grow. In your opinion, what’s the biggest technology to change learning in the last year?

I’m excited about new “coding tools” that make it easier for kids to program their own interactive stories, games, and animations.

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Educational Technology Innovation in India

| April 26, 2015 at 8:00 am

Padra is a small area in Gujarat whose identity can be placed somewhere between a village and a town. Hailing from this place, Mihir Pathak is a 19 year old youngster who mustered up enough courage to drop out of college and start his own alternative education centre. “I just couldn’t concentrate in school or college. I was sure that there can be better ways of learning and hence I decided to drop out,” says Mihir. His decision was backed by his travels which took him to places like Auroville. “With support from my family, I spent a few months at some of the alternative education hubs across India and got the inspiration to start something of my own,” says Mihir.

And that he did. Learnlabs.in– “An initiative to build model schools by using integrated manner of innovative teaching-learning methods that will become a benchmark of excellence for educating underprivileged children.”

Over a telephone conversation, Mihir tells us about all the exciting things they’ve been up to. Currently working with government schools in Padra, the work has begun in full swing. “We are going to introduce MIT Scratch to all students from 1st std to 8th at Muni Seva Ashram School. We completed our pilot project with few students from std 6th and 7th,” says Mihir. His friend and mentor, Samyak Bhuta helped in making this aspect possible.

learnlabs_1

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Using Mindcraft to Build New Worlds

Three ways to use Minecraft imaginatively in the classroom

From The Guardian, April 7, 2015

By and

From getting students to think about careers to rebuilding their school, teachers share inventive ways they use the building-block game

School image and Minecraft version

Teacher Matthew Bell from Stackpole VC school in Pembrokeshire used Minecraft to build a virtual replica of his school building with students. Photograph: Stackpole VC school, Pembrokeshire

Excited shouts of “left, left, left”, “knock down that tree” or “pick up that stone” can only mean one thing: your students have discovered the virtual world ofMinecraft.

Since its launch in 2011, children and adults worldwide have spent hours creating unique environments. The video game generates a blank landscape of different terrains that players explore. They construct buildings, mine for useful materials and, depending on what mode you’re in, may have to defend yourself from attacks or stave off hunger.

An education version of the game, MinecraftEdu, has now made its way into schools. In 2013, one Swedish school made the game a compulsory part of its curriculum. Now the government in Northern Ireland is providing funding for the game to be rolled out in all secondary schools by June 2015.

We took to Twitter to find out how teachers are using Minecraft. From history to languages, and coding to renewable energy, here are some fun ideas from our community.

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