Below we describe the process of supporting teachers integrating a project-based learning approach in a Fab Lab together with their own class. This process includes a set of sessions, where a facilitator from OSHub-FR guides the teacher, in a real setting with their students, throughout each stage of the project, guaranteeing that the teacher gains the necessary competences to develop it autonomously.
- The objects that will be created are aligned with the educational objectives of the teacher and are integrated in a class project, that needs to be feasible in terms of skills, equipment and materials;
- The teacher acknowledges that, in addition to producing the objects, a fundamental part of the process is also learning how to design the objects using 2D or 3D design softwares. As such, before starting, it is important to define which parts will be designed and which software is needed;
- The teacher has connections with other teachers in the school and the technology teacher will be involved in the project,
- It is key to establish a calendar that includes the main project steps and the amount of time needed, and possible, to work with the students.
After this, the teacher and the OSHub facilitator make a project plan and define the type and number of workshops that will be implemented with the students.
- Presenting and discussing the project with the class and how the OSHub facilitator will be helping - 1 session
- Training students on a design software program - 2 to 3 sessions
- Deciding on the type of machines needed - 1 session
- Making test prototypes with recycled materials - 1 session
The exact number of sessions needed for the fabrication steps depends on the kind and size of the project, thus being difficult to define a precise number. However, the important point is to have students actively participating in ideation and drawing, so that they understand how to go from an abstract idea to creating the actual object, by experiencing the different stages of prototyping and testing.