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Three Reflections on a Fun Workshop During ISTE Live

As I’ve mentioned a couple of times in the last week, last week I went to a micro:bit workshop hosted by Gary Stager and Sylvia Martinez. It was a lot of fun! If you get a chance to go to one of their workshops, go! I’ve been thinking about that workshop for the last nine days. There are three elements of it that I can identify that made it a great workshop. 

1. Gary didn’t speak to us for very long. He spoke just enough at the start to give an introduction to the big picture and enough instruction to get us going on some challenge activities. In other words, he modeled exactly what he and Sylvia write about in Invent to Learn. We were all working on challenge activities within about ten minutes of the start of the workshop.

2. The list of challenge activities was printed and distributed to every circular table in the room. That made it easy to talk to the other people at the table and say which activity you were trying to do. That’s much better than having to look up at a big screen to get the answer to “what are we supposed to be doing?” 

3. It’s more fun to learn by doing a challenge activity with another person or two. The folks at my table were enthusiastic and ready to dive in. We high-fived when we completed a challenge!

Bonus Item!

There was fresh fruit and orange juice available along with the standard breakfast coffee pastries you might expect at a conference. Given the option, I’ll take the fresh fruit 8.5 times out of 10. 

Notes from the workshop:

The majority of my notes from the workshop are available here. An introduction to micro:bit and MakeCode is available here

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