I couldn’t find a satisfactory wall mount for a mini glue gun, so I made one with @Tinkercad and an @Ultimaker. You can find it on the @thingiverse… @BrearleyNYC #MakerEd #STEAM

Problem Finding begat Problem Solving!

It troubled me that students would plop the glue gun on the counter top in between squirts, leaking glue and causing a burn/fire hazard. After searching for a wall-mounted solution, I ended up making my own design in @Tinkercad and printing on one of our @Ultimaker printers.

After several incarnations (and a small pile of plastic), I settled on a relatively simple model that will hold a mini glue gun against the wall during use or while cooling. I posted my design to @Thingiverse here: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:5377878

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Pics from my visit to @DwightSchool’s #SparkLab designed by @lesa_wang! #makerspace #MakerEd #STEAM

Since 2012, Don Buckley has taught or co-taught Managing Educational Technology Resources at Teachers College Columbia University (Course number MSTU4029). For his first year teaching the course, I was a student in his class and helped him brainstorm possible topics and projects. I also came up with the useful-yet-unoriginal hashtag #MSTU4029 to gather tweets for class participants. For many of his class sessions, Don taps folks from his huge network of professionals, teachers, experts, and creatives to join as guest lecturers and offer real world examples his students, and he has been kind to include me almost every year as a panelist or presenter. Don also goes on site visits around the city rather than always having his class meet on Teachers College’s campus.

Since last night’s class took place in Dwight School’s Spark Lab on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, Lesa Wang (who is Dwight’s Global Spark Programs Director and Head of Design — and designed the space!) and Matthew Moran (who teaches Computer Science in the Spark Lab) hosted and presented their work and sample projects. Don asked me to also share some of the projects and initiatives I launched at The Brearley School. I was equally delighted to accept his invitation and to see the Spark Lab — I love visiting schools and makerspaces! The Spark Lab is Lisa’s most recently designed makerspace, and (since she is an artist and innovator) the lofty areas are thoughtfully organized, outfitted, useful, purposeful, and colorful! See photos below…

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Gathering my notes and tweets from yesterday’s mycelium workshop at @GenspaceNYC (organized by @STEMteachersNYC)… #STEMintheCITY #scichat #STEMed

Yesterday, I met up with Tracy Rudzitis and Don Buckley for a workshop at Genspace in South Brooklyn. Here’s some info about Genspace copied from their website:

Genspace is the world’s first community biology lab — a place where people of all backgrounds can learn, create, and grow with the life sciences.

Since 2009, we have served the greater New York area by providing hands-on STEAM education programs for youth and adults, cultural and outreach events for the public, and a membership program to support New York’s community of creatives, researchers, and entrepreneurs. Our programs demystify scientific processes, provide a platform for innovation, and cultivate the next generation of life sciences leaders in emerging global technologies, such as biotechnology, neuroscience, epidemiology, genomics, and many more.

The mycelium workshop yesterday was organized by STEMteachersNYC as part of their annual STEM in the City initiative. Here’s some info copied from STEMteacherNYC’s website’s About section:

STEMteachersNYC is a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting a community of STEM teachers across the NYC region. Our mission is to cultivate excellence in STEM teaching and to promote deep understanding and success for students through innovative, teacher-led professional development. Our weekend workshops are offered during the school year and multi-week workshop intensives occur in the summer, led by master teachers. We welcome and encourage teachers from across the globe, the US, and the local New York City area!

** Here is more info about the STEM in the City initiative and some upcoming opportunities: https://stemteachersnyc.org/category/stem-in-the-city/

I am totally grateful that STEMteachersNYC organized yesterday’s site visit! Tracy and I are self-proclaimed PD addicts, and while we have participated in many online offerings over the past two years, we much prefer being in-person, exploring together, and continuing the conversation at a local watering hole. When we entered Genspace’s lab, we were able to examine a bunch of materials and projects laid out for us. Don and I particularly loved the examples of leaves imprinted with artwork to highlight the process of photosynthesis(!!). I always appreciate an opportunity to explore a lab/makerspace to see how supplies and works in progress are organized — and I’m now considering ways to hack my tables to include storage below. Also on display at Genspace was the OpenTrons Project robot liquid dropper that began as an independent exploration in the lab but is now commercially available!

Mycelium is a biodegradable fungal material, and during a brief presentation before the hands-on portion of the workshop, we talked about how mycelium is used to create shipping packaging (in lieu of plastic or styrofoam), faux leather, building material, art objects, and more. I know many maker friends who have been integrating mycelium into STEM and STEAM projects (Corinne Takara, Erik Nauman, Chris Sweeney, Tracy Rudzitis…), but I have never experimented with the mushroom spores, and I’m excited to start! Tracy brought some 3D-printed plastic molds designed by her students in Tinkercad to fill with the mycelium mixture; She was inspired by Corinne Takara who has experimented with biomaterials for years and espouses growing materials rather than simply purchasing or consuming non-biodegradable materials. You can read more about some of Corrine’s work in this post: https://grow.bio/blogs/grow-bio-blog/giy-maker-spotlght-corinne-takara

Here is a tutorial for getting started (thanks for the link, Tracy!): https://grow.bio

Here are some tweets posted during yesterday’s workshop:

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Finally finished this chandelier made from the rolled up flyers that flooded my mailbox in June before the mayoral primary. #MakerEd #STEAM #ArtEdTech

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