Mimi Ito is a cultural anthropologist and absolute trailblazer in connected learning – exploring the effect of media and technology on how kids today live and learn. She’s analyzed how media affects identity, relationships, and communication. In other words, how tech has affected and changed the course of our everyday lives.
So you can imagine our excitement when we invited her to be a special guest panelist on our upcoming webinar (Coding and the Four Cs), and she accepted! We’re so excited to profile Mimi here because she’s a pioneering innovator whose work lies at the intersection of technology and learning – a place educators are actively diving into, and right where littleBits sits. In addition to her major accomplishments, she is the research director of the Digital Media and Learning Hub at UC Irvine, and co-founder of Connected Camps.
Photography via Edutopia
Want to know more about Mimi, so you can properly pick her brain during our upcoming webinar (don’t forget to sign up!)? Check out these three key takeaways educators can get from her studies.
1. Kids need ongoing support and hands-on projects. Learning starts with a supportive peer group where kids can explore, create, mentor one another, and experiment in their own learning journey. Children will often seek out online groups and communities to foster their development and socialization.
2. Children are pioneers of self-teaching and learning. So once children are in a space where they can take creative risks, mess around, and even teach each other, they become proactively engaged. The internet and gaming are huge resource hubs for this type of learning.
3. The internet is the perfect hub for children to seek out new information and interest-based learning. Mimi discovered that kids today know that whatever they want to learn – coding, an instrument, an art form – they can look up online and teach themselves. From this introduction, kids are quick to share their knowledge, collaborate, learn, and problem-solve because they’re actively engaged in the subject or activity they want to master.
What that means for STEM/STEAM education and the future
Essentially, these takeaways are total game-changers and they flip the traditional classroom learning experience. Kids are taking learning into their own hands, but they’re also gaining and developing lifelong skills.
Mimi is completely transforming how kids are learning and engaging with the world around them. We’re honored to have her share her knowledge and takeaways on bringing critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity to the learning process.
We are so inspired by rockstar researchers like Mimi and developed the littleBits Code Kit with innovators like her in mind. Our Code Kit is about play, fun, and building – and putting that curiosity and learning into the hands of future coders big and small.
Sign up for our special webinar now so you can hear from Mimi and ask her your burning questions!