Posted by Cynthia | Filed under Musings
Being a parent of school age kids, I’ve done my share of research on the topic of fostering creativity in education. It seems for many, exploration in problem solving, growth through the opportunity to fail, and connection to process through hand made craft, is becoming a lost art. Thankfully, a group of forward thinking students from Stanford is traveling across the U.S. in their Spark Truck with ‘cool 21st-century shop tools, spreading the fun of hands-on learning and encouraging kids to find their inner maker.’ While working on the development of the concept, they were “shocked to find that due to tight budgets and strict testing requirements, many schools don’t have the flexibility or equipment to support hands-on building.” They ran a Kickstarter campaign, to raise some money for a truck and some high-tech maker equipment, including a laser cutter and some 3D printers. Then, they hit the road, bringing the love of design to kids. “Our favorite age range to work with is 7-13 years old, because this is the range when opportunities to create and explore in school diminish, and pressure to conform and fit into standardized systems and tests increases,” writes Chua. “We want to make sure that fun, open-ended opportunities are made available to kids as they move through school and life because this is what helps kids get over their fear of failure and grow confidence in their abilities to be creative and work through tough problems.” Great stuff. I applaud the vision to give back to the community by providing much needed enrichment for kids.