I was honored to teach an elective class called "Engineering for Social Good" last semester. Our final project in the course was the design of computer controllers for individuals with quadriplegia. Our goal was to create prototypes, and then share the construction process on the site Instructables for individuals to recreate. The entire engineering design process can be seen on our class Padlet shelf here. A final student Instructable can be seen here. See a few images below.
See a video of a controller in action below.
I am teaching physics for the first time in 21 years! Beginning with a unit on conservation of energy by challenging students to create marble roller coasters using cardboard boxes and foam pipe insulator. The entire activity is based on this blog post by physics educator Ben Wildeboer. Click here for our class handbook with activity specifics and follow up inquiry cycle applications. See a few images below.
Much like during distance learning I will be using one Google Doc for each class to serve as an interactive lesson plan. This "view only" document will house not only all learning cycles, including student links, Padlet drop boxes, lab/activity templates, etc., but it will also be the location for links students will use constantly throughout the semester such as the course syllabus, periodic table, past quiz archives, reference videos, etc.
Keeping the above in mind, because a Google Doc is not a website, what I am gaining in ease of editing and student interaction/access, I am losing in lack of access to organizational structures such as drop-down menus, tabs, etc. In order to bridge the gap between Google Docs and a traditional website, I will be including links that students will need to access regularly in the "Header", which is repeated at the top of EVERY PAGE. A simple solution, yet very useful solution.
Click here for an example of an interactive Google Doc notebook for my upcoming chemistry class (note: this document is very much still a work in progress). Additionally, see screenshots below.
I was honored to be chosen by the graduating class of 2021 at my school to give this commencement address. My goal was simple: Celebrate the "...unwanted Hero's Journey" that my students found themselves in and remind them that the have persevered and grown through a moment in history unlike any other students before them. See the video below if you would like to view the speech.
My "Engineering for Social Good" class just completed a three-week design cycle leveraging the MakeyMakey in the 100% distance learning setting. I have written about similar projects before, and I am, yet again, amazed by the power of the the "shelf" feature in Padlet for student public showcase, collaboration, and tracking of the design cycle. See embed the entire cycle below.