K-12 educators from Southeastern Wisconsin and across the country converged in July at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD) for two weeklong bootcamps, “Emerging Technologies: Make!” The educators gained hands-on experience with virtual reality, augmented reality, 3D printers, laser cutters, etching, and other emerging technologies – all with the goal of enhancing project-based learning and art and design curricula in their schools. Originally, only one section of the course was scheduled, but high demand and interest led to the addition of a second.
During each session, teachers experimented with the emerging technologies and learned about the innovative ways MIAD applies them in problem-solving and learning.
“The class isn’t necessarily focused on creating a technical skill set, but on the new ways of thinking about using the technology and cultivating methodology and problem-solving skills,” said Mr. Ben Dembroski, course instructor, MIAD alumnus and manager of MIAD’s Open Lab/Maker Space.
Throughout the course, Mr. Dembroski demystified the new technologies and helped teachers generate specific ideas to take back to their classrooms.
“MIAD and this program have a great reputation. We could go anywhere to learn how to use this equipment, but MIAD goes beyond, so we can learn how to use it to communicate ideas,” said Mr. Ben Lamp, a participant and art teacher at Pewaukee High School.
The course is part of MIAD’s annual summer Creative Educator’s Institute (CEI), an immersive, exciting exploration that provides educators the opportunity to network with peers, generate curricular ideas for classroom projects and earn credits toward license renewal. CEI is just one of MIAD’s community outreach programs. As a four-year, nonprofit college, MIAD also offers a nationally recognized Pre-College program – a series of weekend and summer classes devoted to developing high school students’ skills and preparing them for a college education.