Sorry, it was not clear if the only presenters you wanted were students! I would be happy if that were the case, but as I am a teacher working with students, I thought I'd offer a session based on things I have done around my state. I will not feel rejected if I am not needed!

Your Name: Marc Natanagara, Ed.D.

Grade Level: P-12

School or Organization Name: Toms River Regional Schools

Co-Presenter Name(s): (n/a)

Area of the World from Which You Will Present: East Coast of the United States

Language in Which You Will Present: English

Target Audience(s): School teachers, administrators, students, and parents

Short Session Description (one line): Implementing a Maker Mindset in schools and classrooms will not only improve learning-- it's fun!

Full Session Description (as long as you would like): 

Over the past two decades, a movement has been coalescing that blends hacker culture, social media, and traditional arts & crafts. It has brought together cooks and quilters, drone pilots and pianists, cosplayers and computer programmers. It is epitomized by shows like Mythbusters, Flea Market Flip, Shark Tank, and Chopped; on Discovery, HGTV, and DIY channels; and in two whole magazine racks at Barnes & Noble. Canva, a craft website, has over 10 million paid members; Etsy 54 million contributors; Pinterest 100 million users. Increasingly people from all walks of life travel and pay to experience maker culture in person; the World Maker Faire in Queens, NY, drew over 100,000 participants this past fall.


Whichever the platform or venue, what attracts people to making is an inspiration to attack challenges with imagination, creative uses of tools and materials, and often reckless abandon. Makers are, by nature, voracious learners and selfless collaborators. Maker events and places create both physical and virtual pop-up open-source thinktanks in a civilization where new discoveries are often thought of first for profit.

In schools, new standards in science, technology, and careers, and access to cheaper and more powerful hardware like Arduinos have created the perfect opportunity to instill a maker mindset. Schools and communities are building makerspaces where every student can brainstorm, collaborate, and prototype solutions to problems of their choice learning to use 21st century tools and diverse materials. They prepare students for real life problem solving, a modern workforce, and a tech based economy. To create tomorrow’s entrepreneurs, we need to start when they are young. It is both a mindset, a collection of experiences, and, as Liam Neeson said, acquiring a specific set of skills. This works most effectively when schools and communities work together.

Websites / URLs Associated with Your Session:

Tags: STEAM, authentic, learning, maker, standards

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I'm writing on behalf of the co-coordinators of the 2017 Student STEM + Entrepreneurship Conference.

Thank you so much for your submission. Unfortunately, we cannot accept your proposal because this conference is tailored to student presenters. If you are so eager to present your work, you can ask a college student to present.

Thanks for your cooperation. 

Eunice Daudu and Gaby Palines
Co-coordinators of the 2017 Student STEM + Entrepreneurship Conference


STEM + Entrepreneurship


The Learning Revolution

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