Sunday, May 27, 2018

Maker Fatigue? #MakerEd

This has been an amazing year for me as a Maker Educator. I've worked with students and staff to create a new makerspace at my new job and have worked hard on plans to expand the space three fold next year. Project Based Learning and Making have taken hold in some classes and expanded in others. I have had the joy of working with so many different students and teachers on creating amazing projects and lessons to showcase understanding and engage students. I sit at home on this holiday weekend proud of what I have accomplished, but exhausted.

I was hoping to dive into some making this weekend. I have tossed around some ideas, but nothing seems to be sticking for me. I look around my workroom and all of my tools lay dormant, almost mocking me. I have been so hyper focused on helping everyone at school, I feel like I have lost the creative oomph that I have that sparks my maker impulses. Is it possible to have Maker Fatigue?

I'm not tired of making, I feel like I'm missing the creative flicker that drives my creating. Is it possible I am dealing with more of a Maker's Block and not a Maker Fatigue? I want to dive into some fun Raspberry Pi project and there are some sweet projects on Adafruit right now, but I can't seem to find the drive to do them.

I can see this a huge metaphor for student engagement. If I don't WANT to make something, I do not have the drive or passion to do so. The same is true for students. The ones I have worked with that were excited about their projects were in the space all the time and could not wait to iterate the next version. Those that were just completing a project had a hard time following through on their work or always placed it on the back burner. Maybe the same is true for me?

I wonder how many makers our there have dealt with this type of fatigue or block? Is this something you are not supposed to admit? Does this make me a "bad" or "flawed" maker? I'm not sure of the answers to this, but it can be frustrating to want to make, but don't seem to have anything that appeals to you.

If you have been here, I'd love to hear how you dealt with this.