Wednesday, June 25, 2014

2014 Kansas City Maker Faire - Get Out and See Awesome

Most educators have probably heard something this year about the maker movement in education.  "Making in Education" has become one of those buzz words you hear a lot at conferences in professional development.  Last week President Obama held a Maker Faire at the White House and many districts have added maker spaces to their buildings.  If you are new to the maker movement in education this article by Gary Stager does an excellent job of describing why it is important.

If you have any interest in the maker movement and live in the Kansas City area this weekend you have an amazing opportunity to see it in action at the Kansas City Maker Faire at Union Station - Friday and Saturday (June 28 and 29, 2014).  

You can follow Kansas City Maker Faire on Twitter at @makerfaireKC

I had heard about the Kansas City Maker Faire in 2012 but was unable to attend.  Last year I marked it on my calendar and brought my family.  It blew me away.  It is a little hard to describe without attending but it is like a huge educational party with science, computers, innovators and creativity all in one amazing place.  

It might sound like just a place for nerds to gather and discuss circuits but that is really not it at all.  Union Station is packed with people demonstrating 3D printers, a table with a discussion and examples of fiber art and an area where your family can make several arts and crafts projects.  My wife's favorite part of the day last year was learning more about composting and organic gardening.  My daughter and I learned to solder for the first time and made a name badge.  I signed up for a subscription to Make magazine which has inspired me all year long with each issue.

Living in Kansas City we are at an epicenter of great innovators.  I know it might sound a little funny but over the course of the last year I have learned a lot more about the maker movement and Kansas City really has it going on in many ways.  Consider there are Maker Faires held literally all over the planet and the Kansas City Maker Faire is the 4th LARGEST IN THE WORLD and this year they expect around 13,000 people to attend.

My head was spinning after attending the Kansas City Maker Faire last year and this year I have blocked out two days to attend and soak it up.  I would encourage anyone to head down to Union Station this weekend, buy a ticket and just roam around.  Talk to people and ask questions.  I guarantee that you will learn something and walk away with a new perspective on how we as educators and infuse this type of innovation and creativity into our classrooms.

Hope to see you there!

1 comment:

  1. Hello Eric! My name is Marisa Farnell and I am a student in EDM 310 at the University of South Alabama.This Maker Faire sounds incredible! My EDM class is teaching us how to incorporate technology into the classroom, and it has inspired me to do all I can to do just that. This Faire sounds like something that would really help me out on this endeavor. Thank you for sharing about your experience!