Make the Future
Summit 2022
Creative Constructor
Lab Virtual
Leadership Exchange
at ISTELive 21
Edtech Advocacy &
Policy Summit

Storytelling in the Fourth Industrial Revolution: Merging Physical Computing and Social Sciences

Explore and create
Pre-registration required

Explore and create : BYODex

Tuesday, June 25, 4:15–5:45 pm
Location: Franklin 1-2, Marriott

Susan Brown   Natalie Freed   Barbara Liedahl  
Integrate media arts, a maker mindset and physical computing into any subject! In this deep-dive, hands-on session, join us to explore and design a paper circuit, illustrate and illuminate your “message” with LEDs, and, using a Chibitronics ChibiChip, use code to make it come to life.

Audience: Curriculum/district specialists, Teachers, Library media specialists
Skill level: Intermediate
Attendee devices: Devices required
Attendee device specification: Smartphone: Windows, Android, iOS
Laptop: Chromebook, Mac, PC
Tablet: Android, iOS, Windows
Participant accounts, software and other materials: Internet access
Computing device with a 3.5mm headphone jack (for ChibiChip)
Personal Gmail account helpful but not required.
Focus: Digital age teaching & learning
Topic: Maker activities and programs
Grade level: PK-12
Subject area: Social studies, STEM/STEAM
ISTE Standards: For Students:
Computational Thinker
  • Students understand how automation works and use algorithmic thinking to develop a sequence of steps to create and test automated solutions.
Innovative Designer
  • Students exhibit a tolerance for ambiguity, perseverance and the capacity to work with open-ended problems.

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

Our ancestors were makers. They worked with their hands to plant and harvest crops, build homes and toys, and created solutions to everyday problems to make their lives better and easier. Over the past generations and in our schools, we have lost touch with our instinctual maker abilities because we have developed automated processes to alleviate the need for human intervention with the stuff we humans don’t want to do, or have the stamina to do. As a result, evolutionary changes have pushed the maker in us aside. We have lived through the First, Second, and Third Industrial Revolutions, so now it is time to embrace the Fourth Industrial Revolution!

We believe it is important to bring the “maker” back into our world, in order for us to better understand our world, not to go backward, but to more fully understand the “why” things are the way they are. This presentation will take the participant on a journey to discover how hands-on making can span content areas, engaging students in civic decisions in a transformative way.

The purpose of this session is to provide an opportunity for educators to directly experience ways to engage students in creative making and to discover resources to support teachers in planning cross-curricular, arts-integrated, physical computing learning activities.

This arts-integrated, hands-on BYODex session will inspire educators to provide learning opportunities for students that develop skills in the authentic processes of problem-solving, critical thinking, inquiry, inventing, exploring and discovering (21st Century Skills). These integrated activities will help students exercise their perseverance and resiliency, and learn from mistakes and failure.

This presentation provides an opportunity for educators to experience ways to use making and allow students to tell their own stories and take the lead in developing a better world as technological changes can and will affect their lives. Presenters share a Google Classroom to give teachers a leg up as they become “guides on the ride”.


*Introductions (15 minutes): Explore concepts of Makerspaces, Media Arts, Social Sciences, and Arts Integration. Share student-created samples and their reflections.

*Paper Circuits (30 minutes): Create a paper circuit together. Presenters model the inquiry process and demonstrate the use of online (digital) and paper (analog) resources.

*Microcontrollers (30 minutes): Explore the possibilities microprocessors can add to a project. With support by the presenters, participants will add a microcontroller (Chibitronics’ ChibiChip) into their designs and explore Microsoft Make Code to produce a different output. Presenters will share additional examples of interactive paper circuits that use the ChibiChip.

*Reflection (15 minutes): Participants share their works-in-progress with each other. Presenters recap the information shared, demonstrate extension activities, and review the online resources used during the workshop.

Supporting research

Agency by Design Online Course. (n.d.). Retrieved September 29, 2016, from

Makerspace for Education. (n.d.). Retrieved September 29, 2016, from

Makers in Schools: Entering the Fourth Industrial Revolution (2018) Brown, S. & Liedahl, B.

Martinez, S. L., & Stager, G. (2013). Invent to Learn: Making, tinkering, and engineering in the classroom. Torrance, CA: Constructing Modern Knowledge Press.

Mountsfield Makersville. (n.d.). Retrieved June 18, 2018, from

Papert, S., & Solomon, C. (1971). Twenty things to do with a computer. Cambridge, MA: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, A.I. Laboratory.

Solomon, C. (1986). Computer environments for children: A reflection on theories of learning and education. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

More [+]


Susan Brown, Chibitronics
Natalie Freed,
Barbara Liedahl, Prince George's County Public Schools

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