The Maker Movement is the growing number of people and communities who are engaged in creating, designing, tinkering, and sharing projects. The Maker Movement is increasingly prevalent in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) learning. Libraries and museums are key players in the Maker Movement as well as the STEAM learning ecosystem.
The goal of this research is to investigate the processes of Learning by Making—learning as a process of creating artifacts that are personally meaningful and contribute to a community. The study also explores the ways professionals facilitate youth to become successful Makers.
The research questions include:
- How do teens learn by making in informal learning environments in libraries and museums?
- What are the patterns and processes of learning by making?
- What challenges do teens face during learning by making?
- What facilitates teens’ learning by making?
- What skills and knowledge do teens need to become successful makers?
- How similar or different are teens’ learning by making across the contexts, such as a middle school, high school, public library, and museum?
- What are the best ways to facilitate teens’ learning by making?
By answering the research questions, the research aims to generate specific implications for maker learning environments.
A 3-minute video was created to be presented at the 2017 NSF STEM for ALL Video Showcase and provides an overview of this project.