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Thursday, October 17 • 11:20am - 12:20pm
Animal Centered Design: Engaging a Different Type of Student, Room 112

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When a recently rescued California brown-bear cub walked into the classroom, it captivated the students in a way that most teachers could only dream about. The students hung on every word of the handlers and it became apparent that if I could get a bear into my classroom I, too, could grab the attention of students like never before...

It is my responsibility as a design-thinking and makerspace teacher to engage potential builders, but getting them comfortable and absorbed in a foreign curriculum can be daunting. To overcome this obstacle I turned to a unique set of users and built a class around designing habitats for wild animals in captivity. Everything from the marketing to the curriculum for the class was designed to bring students who did not self-identify as makers into the Innovation Lab. Rather than structure the class as a traditional engineering elective, I built the semester around the goal of giving students an opportunity to work with real-world users and complete a full-cycle project in a single semester. Now, three years into the class, I will be discussing many of the lessons I have learned through iteration as well as the culture shift that occurred around students in the class and their comfort in the lab as time went on.

Wednesday & Thursday Slate
avatar for Rob Zomber

Rob Zomber

I-Lab Teacher and Engineer, The Nueva School
Rob Zomber, Innovation Lab Engineer, is a life-long tinkerer and recent convert to education after a long career in the classic automotive industry. With extensive experience in heavy- and light-duty fabrication, he has worked on everything from building and modifying antique cars... Read More →

Thursday October 17, 2019 11:20am - 12:20pm PDT
Nueva San Mateo Campus 131 E. 28th Avenue, San Mateo, CA 94403
  Design Thinking