Last year we attended the West Virginia Board of Education meeting to introduce them to the Satellite Network...this year we returned to to update them on the Network's activities in West Virginia over the last year
Dror Yaron, CREATE Lab
Carrie Beth Dean, Marshall University
Stan Maynard, Marshall University
I’m Lou Karas, Director of the Center for Arts &
Education at West Liberty University. I’m here today with my
colleagues from the CREATE Lab Satellite Network. With me are Dror
Yaron and Rachel Hite from the CREATE Lab at Carnegie Mellon
University; Stan Maynard and Carrie Beth Dean from the Harless Center
at Marshall University; Jeffrey Carver from the College of Education
and Human Services at West Virginia University and Jessica Meyers and
Karen Savitz from ASSET STEM Education.
fall, professor Illah Nourbakhsh the Director of CREATE Lab at
Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute shared with the you
the story and vision of the CREATE Lab and its Satellite Network.
here today to give you a brief update on the work of the CREATE
Satellite Network in West Virginia.
the past three years the CREATE Lab Satellite Network has grown from
a partnership between the CREATE Lab and the school of education at
Marshall University, to a network including Marshall, West Liberty,
West Virginia University, and Carlow University as well as ASSET STEM
Education. Each Satellite team adapts and uses the CREATE Lab
innovations in a locally meaningful way with the educators and future
educators they support. Similarly, working closely with the CREATE
Lab, the Satellites bring their communities’ needs to bear on the
technology innovation process.
the Satellite Network model of outreach is gaining traction and in
light of its rapid growth, we recognize now is an appropriate time to
invite more perspectives and stakeholders to the table, as we
consider how to meaningfully direct and leverage the momentum and
resources at hand. This has resulted in the formation of an advisory
board that will meet for the first time later this fall at West
the past year, the satellite partners have worked, throughout the
state, with over 1,200 children, Pre-K through 12th
grade and more than 700 educators, both teachers in the field and
pre-service students at the three universities.
are empowering a technologically fluent generation through
experiential learning opportunities in and outside of school. The
technology is the raw material, a tool for a child to use to explore
and address real world issues, to learn - and communicate - about
their own environment and perspective.
been able to take new technology tools from the desk of an engineer
at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute to the hands of
a child in rural West Virginia, making them among the first to gain
access to these innovations.
Each of the Satellites not only provides training on the use of
these technology tools but also, in many instances, is also able to
lend the tools to teachers throughout the state.
work with children has focused on using four of the CREATE Lab
from Me enables young children to better communicate with their
significant adults about their daytime activities at early childhood
programs through the use of digital cameras, microphones, e-mail,
phone messaging and other technologies. Originally developed using
adapted computer kiosks, the program now uses an app developed for
Harless Center has been at the forefront of using Message from Me in
their Pre-K classroom and sharing their experiences with others
around the state.
Children’s Innovation Project takes
broad interdisciplinary and integrated learning approach, focusing on
creative exploration, expression and innovation with
technology. Children explore and learn about electricity through
hands-on engagement with a kit of components designed for young
hands. Utilizing this learning, children disassemble toys, identify
components and then repurpose and reconfigure these internal
components into new circuits, empowering them with new relationships
and understandings of their world.
Harless Center has also taken the lead in the use of the Children’s
Innovation Project in West Virginia schools. In addition ASSET and
Carlow University are developing professional development programs,
which will be shared with the Satellite partners for their use.
third program is Arts & Bots. The
Hummingbird robotics kit is designed to enable engineering and
robotics activities for ages 10 and up that involve the making of
robots and kinetic sculptures built out of a combination of kit parts
and craft materials. Hummingbird provides a great way to introduce
kids to robotics and engineering with construction materials that
they are already familiar with. Hummingbirds have been used in nearly
every aspect of the curriculum: teachers and students have completed
Hummingbird units in science, art, math, history, english, drama,
poetry, and character education classes. The kits have also been used
in numerous summer camps, after-school programs and other
Ilah was here last fall, he shared the news that the CREATE Lab had
been awarded a three-year
$1.5 million National
Science Foundation grant
to support the
“Creative Robotics” project, an
innovative program that introduces robotic technology into
non-technical middle school classes. It is the intent of the research
project is to identify and nurture students with an affinity for
science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
7th and 8th grade students at Springdale Junior-Senior High School in
the Allegheny Valley School District outside of Pittsburgh and all
6th, 7th and 8th grade students in the Mingo County Schools — a
total of 900 children annually — are using the robotic kits
developed at Carnegie Mellon University. They will use the kits to
complete at least one project or assignment each year in required
courses such as health, earth science and language arts.
project also includes faculty members and pre-service educators in
the schools of education at Marshall
universities. We are working with CMU researchers to develop the
curriculum and integrate the project into both existing and new
courses for our students.
is an earthly adaptation of NASA’s Mars Rover imaging technology -
GigaPan helps bring distant communities and peoples together through
images that have so much detail that they are, themselves, the
objects of exploration, discovery, and wonder. Using a small robotic
device, point and shoot camera, stitching software, interactive
online platforms and large-scale prints, GigaPan is enabling people
to explore, experience, and share each other's world.
Virginia University is working with North Elementary School in
Morgantown, to train the teacher to both use gigpan images as well as
generating their own gigapan images. The technology integration
of Gigpan is being conducted in and around the Garden Based Learning
project at the school. The ability to take super high
resolution images during the garden growing season and then utilizing
those images during the non-growing months in the winter allows
teachers to extend the garden based learning curriculum through the
West Liberty, we have incorporated learning how to use the GigaPan
images and technology into several courses in the professional
education program. We are also working with the art teachers in Ohio
County Schools supporting them in the integration of GigaPan into
key focus of the Satellite Network is to provide professional
development opportunities for both teachers in Pre-K through 12th
grade settings around the state –and- for our pre-service students.
We have presented at conferences throughout the state included the
West Virginia Technology conference and the West Virginia Art
Education Association conference. The partners have provided
opportunities ranging from GigaPan workshops lasting a few hours to
weeklong Creative Robotics programs. It is important to note, that
these programs are only the beginning of our work with teachers. Each
Satellite provides on-going support to the teachers.
are emphasizing the integration of the CREATE Lab resources into
pre-service education because we believe it is important for our
future teachers to learn these skills and technologies throughout
their undergraduate years so they will be fully prepared to integrate
them into their classrooms. ASSET, as our newest partner, will be
involved in the expansion of this work.
would like to acknowledge the amazing work done by Debbie Workman,
Carrie-Meghan Quick Blanco and Cathy Walker. They devoted countless
hours building the programs and services of the first Satellite site
at the Harless Center. Over the summer, Debbie and Cathy retired and
Carrie-Meghan moved on to another position. Their enthusiastic
support has helped the other two Satellite sites get off the ground.
would also be remise if I didn’t acknowledge the support of Benedum
Foundation and Jim Denova. Jim has not only provided financial
support for our work but has also shared connections and given us
guidance as we expand the Network’s programs and services.
ahead, next spring, The CREATE Lab Satellite Network and The Sprout
Fund are partnering to present the first annual Creative Tech
Conference: Best Practices of Creative Technology in Education on
April 21 through the 23 in Pittsburgh. The Creative Tech Conference
will ignite productive dialogue and spur the exchange of ideas about
the use of creative technologies (or creative use of technologies) in
education, teaching, and learning.
conference will feature two tracks of programming: Practice and
Ecosystems. The Practice track will feature educators sharing
ideas and stories around their methods and experiences with
integrating technology creatively and successfully into their
classrooms and programs. The Ecosystems track will focus on
discussions about the networks and conditions that support and
empower meaningful technology practice in education. We hope you will
consider joining us for the conference.
the mean time, we also invite you to visit us at Marshall, West
Liberty and WVU to see the work of the CREATE Lab Satellite Network
in action this school year.
Lou Karas, Director of the Center for Arts & Education at West Liberty University