Teachers Tinker

Our Umbrella project for this year is Tinkering. Many of the Teachers at Sabot@StonyPoint are not natural Tinkerers, myself included. Don't get me wrong; as an artist I mess with materials constantly, but mechanics and engineering and physics? Not so much!
Exploring this subject will give teachers a chance to practice and gain new skills,in order to learn how to scaffold others in this type of building. This years Umbrella Project will be a chance for the children at school who have this type of intelligence to teach everyone else a thing or two, or three or four.
So on one of the Teacher work days, we broke into groups and practiced tinkering... the challenge was to use the materials pictured above (plus a few more) to make something that moves. Each group worked together to make something unique, from a coffee fetching machine, to a pop-up surprise.

                                   Teachers collaborated in small groups just as the children would.
                      It took some trial and error to figure out how to make something that really worked.

Some groups drew plans before beginning, and everyone had to take some time to handle and explore the materials.

The group processes were just like what happens every day at school -some people envisioned the projects, some had skills with materials or tools, and others took a more social role, helping the group work together. There was lots of laughing as the groups figured out what they were going to do, and how to make that happen.

  Tinkering together with all of the teachers was terrific fun!


  1. This is fantastic- I love that the teachers got together to experience what the children will be experiencing throughout the year. Its important to go that extra mile to understand the children's point of view.

  2. Beautifully done Anna...thank you for documenting our learning...it was a steep curve for some of us!

  3. I don't think I've ever seen pictures of the teachers working together without the children before! What a treat. While I know (intellectually) that the Sabot teachers carry out work like this while considering how to bring ideas to the students, the reality (as pictured here) is even more cool than I had imagined!

  4. Was it hard, working together to make something? Hard in having to compromise and collaborate?


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