RSI Corporate - Licensing

Designing a school for next-century learning

E-School News – W. Tyler Whitehead

“Sartell-St. Stephen Independent School District, located in central Minnesota, is one of many school districts across the country that recognized a need to dramatically evolve traditional classrooms to create a variety of specialized and flexible learning environments to meet the needs of next-century learners.” (more)

How to Implement Library Makerspaces in STEM Programs

Ed Tech Magazine – Steve Zurier

“What’s the best way to define a makerspace? For Laura Fleming, library media specialist at New Milford High School in New Jersey, a library makerspace is a unique learning environment that encourages tinkering, play and open-ended exploration for all. Fleming, who also runs and manages her own business, Worlds of Making, says too often schools build library makerspaces just for the top engineering students or the gifted and talented students. “When makerspaces really work, they are open to the entire student body,” she says. “It’s really a mindset and a philosophy of education.” Fleming says whether the district sets up a makerspace in an elementary school library, in a middle school classroom or in a high school cafeteria, each makerspace has a unique quality.” (more)

3 lessons on innovating in PBL

E-School News – Don Martin

“After 28 years as a classroom teacher, administrator, and superintendent in rural, southwestern Pennsylvania school districts, I left the traditional school setting and began working for Pennsylvania’s alternative education system, serving at-risk and special needs students. Many students struggle to learn and master concepts in traditional classroom settings. Without a hands-on connection, lessons can be easily lost and remain unhelpfully abstract. I firmly believe that project-based learning (PBL) is one of the best ways to solve this disconnect, so I applied to build a Fab Lab for students in Pennsylvania’s Intermediate Unit 1 (IU1) region.” (more)

Makerspace tips and advice from the front lines

E-School News – Julia Ottesen

“Maker culture is thriving in schools and public libraries across the United States and beyond. From challenges to success stories, no two makerspaces are alike, and maker facilitators have valuable lessons to share. In their recent edWebinar, Michelle Luhtala, library department chair at New Canaan High School in Conn., Ethan Heise, director of MackinMaker, and Heather Lister, professional learning specialist, discussed their experiences with makerspaces and shared advice for those starting their maker education journey.” (more)

The New Librarian: How I created a makerspace

E-School News – Todd Burleson

“As an elementary educator for most of my career, I’ve had the privilege of working with a variety of learners—from inner-city students in North Carolina to university-level students in Chicago—but I found my true calling as the librarian at Hubbard Woods Elementary in Winnetka, Illinois. I’ve been called the “Willy Wonka of school librarians” because I transformed our traditional library into what I call an IDEA (Innovation, Design, Engineering, and Art) Lab complete with flexible furniture, robotics, engineering tools, iPads, laptops, and sewing machines.” (more)

Acknowledging Ungraded Skills

Edutopia – Nicholas Provenzano

“One of my goals this year was to find a way to recognize all of the amazing things students do in the makerspace at University Liggett School. It’s open to students all day and after school, and they’re doing amazing things with Python, littleBits, 3D design, Raspberry Pi, and so much more. While report cards can be used to show parents what students have learned in class—sort of—the makerspace did not have a means to do this. It’s hard to show parents lines of code and have them understand that their child has mastered the skill of making an LED blink. That’s where badging comes in.”(more)