Originally launched in 2017 by Starfish Education in four locations in Thailand, Starfish Maker is a program that focuses on the Makerspace learning management method. Through agreements with the Thai government and with other partners, Starfish Maker has since expanded to help set up Makerspaces in over 120 schools in Thailand, which account for 6,000 teachers and over 23,000 students.
A Space For Unlimited Learning
A Makerspace gives everyone the opportunity to think, research, design, plan, exchange, share, create and develop their work, leading to new innovation. Moreover, Makerspace also helps to promote creativity by providing an environment suitable for learning, including equipment for researching and creating new things, providing people with knowledge and skills, and having experts provide advice to help creators solve problems and work towards their goals.
How Does Learning Occur in a Makerspace?
Learning through Makerspace is possible through the use of a systematic process known as the STEAM Design Process. This 5-step process begins with questions about a problem (Ask), thinking of ways to solve that problem (Imagine), then making a detailed plan (Plan), creating a solution (Create), and appraising how the work went and remaking the solution to be better (Reflect & Redesign). Learning by using the STEAM Design Process in a Makerspace creates a familiarity with step-by-step problem solving for students, and develops learners to be thinkers, problem solvers, and reasonable in their actions.
Starfish Maker - Learning Many Subjects Simultaneously
STEAM Education is an education management method that integrates interdisciplinary knowledge, including Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics. By focusing on applying knowledge to solve real-life problems, Makerspace activities are appropriate to be used in conjunction with STEAM Education in order to effectively develop a learner’s potential.
There is consistency in not being committed to studying only one branch of education, but to give learners the opportunity to choose what they enjoy and are most interested in. People like to begin with things that are closest and most familiar to them, because it’s easy for students to relate to the context of their daily lives. During the creative process, learners must link all of their knowledge to their experience, which is not limited to just one single area. Learning to solve problems in such a way is a natural way of learning that can be applied in life.
Learning in the 21st Century
The 21st century is an age of information. There is knowledge and new things happening all of the time. Those who will succeed in the future are those who have learning skills, as well as the capability to live a good life together. Teaching in the 21st century focuses on skills more than knowledge; on practice; on the process of finding answers to questions; on development of an individual’s potential.
Learning with the STEAM Design Process through Starfish Maker activities promotes essential skills for the 21st century, including: