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If you’ve read my blog, Twitter feed, or Instagram for more than 2 seconds, you’ve probably noticed that creativity is important to me.  Not like peanut butter is important to chocolate, but important like how humans need oxygen to live.  I’ve felt that way since I was a kid, in school, deprived of the oxygen in my learning. And every day since I became a teacher?  I’ve vowed to myself that I will make school more for kids who crave creativity.  When making came along, or intersected my world, I knew this was it.  This mindset, this beautiful way of integrating hands on design, creation, production, and fabrication?  It’s everything my worksheets were not.

Now? The whole country is getting involved and it’s exciting.  YOU can get involved, too.  The White House hosted the first ever White House Maker Faire just last year and this year, a National Maker Faire is taking place at the University of DC on June 18-19, 2016.  Tickets are available on the website for FREE!  The White House has declared June 17-23, a National Week of Making.  An entire WEEK of celebrating MAKERS!    {Note: Not sure what a Maker Faire is?  Check out photos I snapped at the Austin Maker Faire.}  It’s a gathering of all types of Makers to share their craft, inspire each other, and celebrate the creativity that each person can bring to the table.

Most exciting to me?  On Friday, I’ll be visiting the White House (eeek!) for the event kickoff and I’ll be going to the National Maker Faire on Saturday.  I look forward to capturing the experience, connecting with other makers, learning, and sharing.  Learning and sharing is really what making is all about.

To celebrate the Week of Making, I’m going to be sharing daily tips and projects for the elementary crowd and ask that YOU make a commitment to bring making into your classroom in some way in the school year ahead.  I’ll also share some amazing resources and people to connect with that you can find easily around the internet.  If you have questions about making, leave a comment here and I’ll try to make sure I answer it during the Week of Making!  Are you ready to be inspired?

unnamed (1)I can promise you that once you see your students get excited, eyes lit up, and joy on fire, you’ll be glad you opened the door to empower their creativity.  People always ask me, “What stuff do I need to order to start making in my classroom?” Nothing.  The projects I will share with you each day will be stuff you can do with stuff you have or with very, very inexpensive items.  Repurpose, redo, recreate.  Cardboard is the newest item to add to your classroom supply list.  The other comment I get from teachers is, “I don’t feel like I know enough about coding (or  3d printing or creativity or making) to get started.”  Nope.  That’s a myth.  Not knowing, being vulnerable, and taking a risk?  That’s being a maker.  And your students NEED that from you.   Somehow, it’s the not knowing that makes it all an even better and more authentic learning experience.

So, are you ready?  Join the fun in the National Week of Making by following the hashtags #WeekOfMaking and #NationOfMakers.    Let’s make school the most exciting place in a child’s life.  Together we can all share, collaborate, and MAKE the world a better place.  We can also make incredible puns about making, and that’s fun, too.