Challenge Boxes

This week (except for yesterday when I was feeling a little too imprisoned by my self-imposed commitment) I am going to dedicate my posts to sharing resources I learned about at TCEA in Austin last week.  I think packing too much info into a blog post is overwhelming, so if you are craving more, feel free to check out my notes (which are not finished yet!) here.

There were multiple sessions on Maker Spaces at TCEA this year.  If you go to the notes I linked to above, you can find even more info on Maker Space sessions I attended. (It has a special tab on the spreadsheet.)

One of the sessions was presented by Katie Hollis, Marisa Vickery, and Lindsey Mahany who have seriously The. Best. Job titles. Ever. They are “Facilitators for Learning and Innovation” in Dripping Springs ISD.  Cool, right?

The trio presented several sessions, and you can find the links to all of them here.  In the interest of brevity, I’m going to limit this post to one idea out of the many that I loved: Challenge Boxes.

Not every school has a “space” for making.  Even when a school does have extra room, not every child necessarily has the luxury of time to spend in that space.  So, one way to tackle this is to have Challenge Boxes available for checkout.  These plastic boxes (which Lindsey bought at Ikea, I believe) are each packed with low-cost or recycled materials and contain Challenge Cards with assignments that range from making a door opener to designing a spool racer.

The F.L.I. girls (even cooler, right?!!!) were kind enough to provide a link to a folder with all of the necessary paperwork – labels for the boxes, response cards, and 20 different Challenge Cards.

Teachers could check out these boxes for individuals or small groups in their classroom.  They could be a center – or several different centers.

If you have any questions about Challenge Boxes, head on over to the F.L.I. girls’ site where you can find their contact info and much more!

Also, I have a Pinterest Board about Maker Spaces here.

Challenge Box Card example from the F.L.I. Girls
Challenge Box Card example from the F.L.I. Girls

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