New Materialities and Maker Paradigms in Schools
Chapter 12. After Research
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How the findings of this study matter in practice depends on whether digital making and learning is held as an educational good in a given learning ecology. In fact, an assumption of the value of digital making and learning has been explicitly central to this book. But based on many conversations with teachers who were skeptical of it, I don’t think its worth or efficacy can be assumed ahead of time for any particular school, even if school leadership or an enterprising teacher has established a makerspace or FabLab. That is to say, simply agreeing with the underpinnings of constructionist artistic development and socially centered learning—the assumptions of Dewey’s progressivism, Piaget’s constructivism, Papert’s constructionism, and Lowenfeld’s developmentalism— does not presume effective practice, or offer much guidance in the enactment of maker pedagogies in a specific classroom. Further, the assumptions of these 19th- and 20th-century traditions are knotted up in the complexities of digital networks and new media materials that are basic to the emergence of 21st-century teaching. Simply, the maker movement and socially centered learning depend on the internet and other digital networks. As such, digital network dynamics, including digital materiality and its peculiar affordances, need to be theorized as thoughtfully as any other aspect of maker education. On the basis of these caveats, then, I would propose the following: ← 237 | 238 →
Implications for Practice
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