Following the three series of workshops we gave, the Romanian team are currently working on three strands of the project:
1. To analyse and explore the data collected during the workshops. We will finish the chapter for the book project and the draft of one article by the end of the year.
2. To continue the secondments that the Romanian team undertake, and also to facilitate the secondments that other teams have undertaken in Romania. For the former, it is worth mentioning the very productive secondment Anca Velicu had in Melbourne where she participated alongside the Australian team (Dr. Gregg Giannis and Dr. Klaus Thestrup, the latter also a member of Danish team), Danish team and British team to undertake the first stage of the Global Makerspace project, part of the MakEY project (see Denmark’s update above). During the same secondment, she also visited other makerspaces that function in elementary schools for children under the age of 8. As host of other secondees, we enjoyed the visits in Romania of Deborah Rodrigues and Justyna Zubrycka from the German team. Together with Deborah, we organised 2 workshops on Virtual Reality in one school in Bucharest (see Germany’s update above).
3. To interview staff from makerspaces in Romania for an in-depth understanding of their activities, finding out about how they conceive the place of young children in makerspces, and their special needs in this regard. The interviews will add a new layer of understanding to the Romanian Report on the answers from the MakEY survey. On this strand of the project, we have already completed 12 interviews, and we are currently on the way to transcribing them.
UK – LSE
The UK-LSE MakEY team concluded our fieldwork with three museum-based makerspaces for young children in the San Francisco Bay Area, and are examining how parents and families act as learning resources and learning partners to support their young children’s making and tinkering activities both while visiting makerspaces and beyond. We held our final research visits to the Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, the Bay Area Discovery Museum in Sausalito and the Lawrence Hall of Science in Berkeley over the summer, and are now analysing our fieldnotes and interviews with parents, educators and children. We presented our research at the Connected Learning Summit in Boston in August and have contributed to a report at the Center for Childhood Creativity at the Bay Area Discovery Museum that will result in a literature review for early years educators next year.
UK – Sheffield
The Sheffield team have been busy on a number of projects, as well as collaborating with other countries as we continue to undertake our secondments.
Our original set of case studies in two nurseries and two schools completed in the summer term, and we are currently analysing the data and writing up the work. One of the outputs is available as an open access paper:
Marsh, J., Arnseth, H.C. and Kumpulainen, K. (2018) Maker Literacies and Maker Citizenship in the MakEY (Makerspaces in the Early Years) Project. Multimodal Technologies and Interaction, 2(3), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/mti2030050
However, since then, the team have undertaken three additional makerspace projects, which have been requested by various parties. The first of these was a six-month long project at Broomhall Community Centre. We offered a weekly after-school makerspace for children aged from 5-11, which proved to be very popular, with over sixty children registering, and approximately 30 children attending on a weekly basis. Every fortnight there was a different them, and Figures 8 and 9 offer an indication of the kinds of activities children engaged in.