Skip to main content

Voxer Bookchat Kick-Off

First @MakerDads Bookchat kicks off 3/12/18
A special welcome to Harbor View ES (CA), Shields ES (DE), Gatewood ES (MN) and Wyncote ES (PA). Each of them are MakerDads (cohort 1) schools who are starting a virtual bookchat with MakerDads next week. The title we're using in our first virtual professional development offering is a special one by friend and colleague, Laura Fleming: 
Laura and I have known each other for several years now through Edcamps and connected work in schools. Today, we're doing much more strategic collaborations, as HER BOOK is the one I'm personally using to fully convert my 2-car garage into a functioning makerspace for adults and kids. So a lot of our Voxer conversations are filled with makerspace pictures that spur innovation and new making opportunities for kids and adults.

More on that later, but this work is both personal and professional for both of us. On one hand, we're working with schools across the country to evolve their school makerspaces, many from rotting computer labs who seen heaviest volume especially around state testing time. We are working with schools for 1 year (relationship-based PD offerings only, please) to convert their space into one that values and engages the community from Day 1. 

Laura's book is a match for the makerspace development work we're also doing in our home garage, and you can click that link to see the first video of the garage makerspace before we started de-cluttering and being intentional in our use of space overall.

Below is the 2 minute, 32 second Voxer 101 video tutorial for the teachers participating in the bookchat. After you watch, pause where necessary and complete the Voxer sign-up/registration (free) from your phone, send your school principal / MCC (MakerDads Campus Contact) an email with your username. He/she will then officially add you to the Making GREAT Makerspaces bookchat. 

  1. Download Voxer on your phone. Sign-up. Remove all notifications. Customize your username. Wait for next steps.
  2. Email your username to your principal or MCC immediately.
  3. Once you are added to the bookchat, you will be able to open your Voxer app and automatically see the bookchat. Open the thread and you can start listening in and participating when you feel ready. Believe me - it's like the old walkie talkies. Super fun stuff when used effectively. 
  4. Use this week to get familiar with the communication tool. Next week, we'll begin with Week 1 of mGM - Part 1: The Seven Attributes of a GREAT Makerspace.

Please add Lauren (@MakerMom12) and I (@MakerDads) as Voxer contacts.  

We can answer your (admin and bookchat) questions there, but we also use it for personal use ie. shopping list, etc. MakerDads is also on Twitter @MakerDads and will be using hashtags #makerdads and #makingGREATmakerspaces over the next couple months.


Popular posts from this blog

Community Partnerships Through Innovation

Home Depot sent 15 employees from as far away as Newark, NJ to Shields Elementary School (Lewes, DE) on January 30th to support the school's first @MakerDads Night. Dads, Grand-Dads and other male role models were invited to spend a few hours working through 20 STEAM stations, but more importantly spending quality time with a parent or guardian. Check out the pics from the school's Facebook page.

How does your school define and seek community partners?
What exactly does that mean here in 2018? What is possible? What's too much to ask? 

Today I'm sharing one example that can help your school ignite a maker culture across students and adults. The pictures say it all. Look from a kids lens. Parents lens. Community lens. Educators lens. There is a lot awesome right here!

MakerDadsTV - a new series aimed to support classroom teachers

Exciting news from our family start-up, MakerDads, is entering its sixth month in existence. This week, we launched MakerDadsTV, our brand-new YouTube Channel that is designed, filmed and produced for teachers and parents to watch alongside kids. Below is the first episode from Frank's Pizza in Elkins Park, Pennsylvania. 

You will notice, fairly quickly, that the video editing isn't done by a professional, and we are certainly working to make that part better engaging the help of some local high school students. But I encourage you to hone in on how we are leaning on the community to deepen our understanding of making during the 5 minute. There are several opportunities for learning and reflection, that I want to bring attention to in this post. Let's take a quick look at the show's (initial) structure:

Opening Credits
You will see my kids unloading our filming briefcase full of cameras, cords and other things we need to go out on the road. You might notice that I reverse…

Open Make

Last week on #LeadUpTEACH I chatted with Laura Gilchrist, Heidi Veal and Elizabeth Bostick on MakerDads, our new (5 month-old family start-up) that is growing at a pace my wife and I didn't anticipate. We honestly didn't know if we'd get more than a school or two to book us for the first year, but here we are 5 months and I'm speaking with principals, teachers, parents and students daily to plan and orchestrate two-day in-residence experiences. More on that later, but below is the 55 minute clip recorded raw without a 10 minute tidy or staged - it is right from our working home makerspace, I'm about to put it through a 3 month makeover. 

If the video looks like a guy with a mustache surrounded by a bunch of clutter (maybe in his garage?), you've got the right video.

The MakerDads work happening across (our first cohort of schools in DE, PA, CA & MN) are also evolving teaching and learning spaces in their own schools. As part of the MakerDads model, I'm wo…