On this littleBits Community Call, Nicholas Provenzano, AKA The Nerdy Teacher, told us about his favorite student project: an interpretive dance that compared characters from “Catcher in the Rye” and “The Great Gatsby.” Not only was this a longtime dream finally come true, it also embodies his philosophy of teaching through making. He believes that makerspaces are not just about expensive machines or a sole focus on technology. They support interest-driven learning by fueling curiosity and giving students choice. For him, making “gives kids opportunities to show what they know in ways that fit their talents.” His second favorite? A six foot tall interactive green light post another student created to explore the symbolism in “The Great Gatsby.”
I want kids to know that they can try and they can fail. When you set that culture in your classroom, you will get the most amazing things ever.
To hear more about building a community of risk-takers, the benefits of project-based learning, and his latest book, “Your Starter Guide to Makerspaces,” check out our chat with him.
Follow him on Twitter: @thenerdyteacher