Agency by Design
Educational initiatives that emphasize making, design, engineering, and tinkering have been gaining traction in schools and organizations across the country. While maker-centered learning is not a new concept, recent and emerging trends suggest a new kind of hands-on pedagogy—a responsive and flexible pedagogy that encourages community and collaboration (a do-it-together mentality), distributed teaching and learning, and crossing boundaries.
Agency by Design (AbD) is a multiyear research initiative at Project Zero investigating the promises, practices, and pedagogies of maker-centered learning experiences.
Understanding Agency Part II: Putting an Abstract Concept into Action
AbD researchers describe how their use of agency “vignettes” help them gain new understandings around the concept of agency.
Maker-Centered Learning And The Development Of Self
Maker-Centered Learning And The Development Of Self: Preliminary Findings Of The Agency By Design Project
A White Paper Presented By Agency by Design
Project Zero, Harvard Graduate School Of Education
This White Paper, from January 2015, presents an overview of our developing work, and concludes by presenting the “big take away” from our research and by making suggestions for policymakers, educators, and other stakeholders. Along the way, we identify what we consider to be the most salient benefits of maker-centered learning for young people and, introduce some of the key concepts and resources that have emerged from our work, including the concept of maker empowerment, the importance of developing a sensitivity to design, and the three pathways that lead to these desired outcomes.
Developing a Sensitivity to the Design of Teacher Learning Communities
A community of teachers and researchers work together in Cambridge, MA and Temescal, CA to learn more about how students understand design in the world.
Making Circuits Work: A Learning Journey
Agency by Design researcher Jessica Ross explores circuitry by engaging in a hands-on journey to build a flashing LED light from scratch.
In this picture of practice essay, educators Ilya Pratt and Jeanine Harmon share a community “Design + Build” project. Fourth and fifth grade students from North Oakland Charter School and Park Day School find an opportunity to work together to build T-Stools for classrooms.
Parts, Purposes, Complexities in a Technology Classroom
High School technology students in Darlease Monteiro’s class use Parts, Purposes, Complexities to analyze website apps prior to designing their own.