Designing Constructionist Futures: The Art, Theory, and Practice of Learning Designs

Designing Constructionist Futures: The Art, Theory, and Practice of Learning Designs


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A diverse group of scholars redefine constructionism—introduced by Seymour Papert in 1980—in light of new technologies and theories.

Constructionism, first introduced by Seymour Papert in 1980, is a framework for learning to understand something by making an artifact for and with other people. A core goal of constructionists is to respect learners as creators, to enable them to engage in making meaning for themselves through construction, and to do this by democratizing access to the world's most creative and powerful tools. In this volume, an international and diverse group of scholars examine, reconstruct, and evolve the constructionist paradigm in light of new technologies and theories. Taken together, their contributions show that constructionism has advanced in educational research and practice—and also that, in turn, researchers and practitioners can learn from constructionism how to foster learning in ways that respect learners' creativity and communities.

The contributors examine how constructionist design can function within contexts ranging from school and home to virtual spaces; explore ways to support learners who have been under-resourced, overlooked, or oppressed; discuss learning by collaboration; and consider the implications of learning as a creative process of construction, exploring ways to support creative enterprises within the constraints of formal classrooms. Finally, leading visionaries imagine where constructionism, design, and research will go next


Konstantin Aal, Dor Abrahamson, Edith K. Ackermann, Michael Ahmadi, Emma Anderson, Edward Baafi, Stephanie Benson, Laura Benton, Matthew Berland, Marina Umaschi Bers, Paulo Blikstein, Bryan McKinley Jones Brayboy, Karen Brennan, Leah Buechley, Angela Calabrese Barton, Teresa Casort, David Cavallo, Kiera Chase, Alison Clark-Wilson, Sequoia L. Dance, Joshua A. Danish, Sayamindu Dasgupta, Michael Eisenberg, Noel Enyedy, Deborah A. Fields, Andrea Forte, Gayithri Jayathirtha, Brian Gravel, Sara M. Grimes, Idit Harel, Erica R. Halverson, Nathan Holbert, Celia Hoyles, Raquel Jimenez, Yasmin B. Kafai, Ivan Kalas, Anna Keune, Susan Klimczak, Eric Klopfer, Maximilian Krüger, Chronis Kynigos, Tim Kubik, Breanne K. Litts, Benjamin Mako Hill, Amon Millner, Andrés Monroy-Hernández, Richard Noss, Seymour Papert, Kylie Peppler, Judy Perry, Mitchel Resnick, Rebecca Reynolds, Ricarose Roque, Piers Saunders, Kristin A. Searle, Kimberly M. Sheridan, Arnan Sipitakiat, R. Benjamin Shapiro, Gary S. Stager, Gunnar Stevens, Vanessa Svihla, Edna Tan, Orkan Telhan, Naomi Thompson, Nalin Tutiyaphuengprasert, Anne Weibert, Michelle Hoda Wilkerson, Volker Wulf, Uri Wilensky, Jianwei Zhang

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780262539845
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 10/27/2020
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 769,444
Product dimensions: 6.06(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.77(d)

About the Author

Nathan Holbert is Assistant Professor of Communication, Media, and Learning Technologies Design at Teachers College, Columbia University.

Mathew Berland is Associate Professor of Design, Creative, and Informal Education in the School of Education at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.

Yasmin B. Kafai is Lori and Michael Milken President's Distinguished Professor at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, coauthor of Connected Gaming, Connected Code, and Connected Play (all published by MIT Press) and other books.

Table of Contents

Foreword: Seymour *Is* A Powerful Idea Alon Kay ix

Introduction: Fifty Years of Constructionism Nathan Holbert Matthew Berland Yasmin B. Kafai 1

I Increasing Scale

1 Engaging Learners In Constructing Constructionist Environments Sayamindu Dasgupta Benjamin Mako Hill Andres Monroy-Hernández 21

2 Playgrounds and Microworlds: Learning to Code in Early Childhood Marina Umaschi Bers 31

3 Making Constructionism Work At Scale: The Story Of Scratchmaths Richard Noss Celia Hoyles Piers Saunders Alison Clark-Wilson Laura Benfon Ivan Kalas 39

4 Lessons Learned During Research and Development of Globaloria, 2006-2017 Rebecca Reynolds Idit Harel 53

5 Half-Baked Constructionism: A Strategy to Address the Challenge of Infusing Constructionism in Education in Greece Chroms Kynigos 61

6 Why School Reform is Impossible Seymour Papert 73

7 The Scratch Educator Meetup: Useful Learning in a Playful Space Karen Brennan Raquel Jimenez 85

8 Applied Constructionism in Thailand: Two Decades Constructionist School in Thailand Nalin Tutiyaphuengprasert 97

9 Connecting Modern Knowledge: Crafting the Next Generation of Constructionists Gory S. Stager 105

II Supporting Equity

10 Cheesemaking Emancipation: A Critical Theory of Cultural Making Paulo Blikstein 115

11 Reclaiming Traditionally Feminine Practices and Materials For Stem Learning Through the Modern Maker Movement Kylie Peppler Anna Keune Naomi Thompson 127

12 Constructionism as a Pedagogy of Disrespect Nathan Holbert 141

13 Cultivating Community Change While Creating Construction Kits: Launching Scratch, Modkit, and L2TT2L Amon D. Millner Edward Baafi Suson Klimczok 151

14 Jeitismo Construcionismo in Brasilean Learning Communities David Cavallo 159

15 The Role of Critical Science Identity Artifacts in Youth Claiming a Rightful Presence in Stem Angela Calabrese Barton Edna Tan 167

16 Indigenous Youth Making Community Tours Kristin A. Searle Breanne K. Litts Bryan McKinley Jones Brayboy Yasmin B. Kafai Teresa Casorf Stephanie Benson Sequoia L. Dance 177

17 Computational Making With Children In Intercultural Computer Clubs Anne Weibert Konstantin Aal Maximilian Krüger Michael Ahmadi Gunnar Stevens Volker Wulf 185

III Expanding the Social

18 Building Relationships and Building Projects: Designing For Family Learning Ricarose Roque 195

19 Playful Constructionism in Museums, Libraries, and Other Voluntary Spaces: Co-Construction, Co-Facilitation, And Co-Dread Matthew Berland 205

20 Storytelling as a Support for Collective Constructionist Activity Michelle Hoda Wilkersan Brian Gravel 213

21 Constructing Sharable Text: Constructionist Experiences of Online Writing Andrea Forte 227

22 Taking Up Multeliteracies in a Constructionist Design Context Breanne K. Litts Erica R. Halverson Kimberly M. Sheridan 235

23 Constructing With and Through the Body Joshua A. Danish Noel Enyedy 245

24 Shaping Learning Online For Making and Sharing Children's Diy Media Deborah A. Fields Sara M. Grimes 255

25 Real-World Constructionism: How Vision Perks vs. How Reality Works Arnan Sipitakiat 265

IV Developing the Creative

26 Experiences of Artifacts: People's Appropriations/Objects' "Affordances" Edith K. Ackermann 275

27 Restructuration Theory and Agent-Based Modeling: Reformulating Knowledge Domains Through Computational Representations Uri Wilensky 287

38 Hi-Lo Tech Crafting: Tinkering With Textiles, Paper, and Everything Else Yasmin B. Kafoi Gayithri Jayathirtha 301

29 Syntonicity and Emergence: A Design-Based Research Reflection On the Piagetian Roots of Constructionism Dor Abrahamson Kiera Chase 311

30 Constructionism in Art Studios Kimberly M. Sheridan 323

31 Creativity as Sustained Social Practices: Four Pillars For Creative Learning Design Jianwei Zhang 331

33 Sailing in Open Waters: Choosing, Charting, and Navigating Constructionist Learning Experiences Vanessa Svihla Tim Kubik 341

33 Constructionist Learning Games in School Eric Klopfer Emma Anderson Judy Perry 349

V The Future of Constructionism

34 Constructionism And Creative Learning: Interview With Mitchel Resnick 363

35 New and Future Coding Paradigms: Interview with R. Benjamin Shapiro 369

36 Advancing Making with Biology: Interview with Orkan Telhan Yasmin B. Kafai 375

37 Self-Directed Constructionist Communities: Interview With Leah Buechley 381

38 Examining Constructionist Bodies: Interview With Michael Eisenberg 387

Contributors 393

Index 397

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