Kokomo High School leads the way in Experiential Learning
If you drive past Kokomo High School, in Kokomo, Indiana, it may look like an average high school, but students are brining learning to life through STEM education. Kokomo High School is on a path towards becoming STEM Certified through the Indiana Department of Education, and part of that process has involved adding a makerspace. “We want students to leave Kokomo High School prepared for the future, and the makerspace will give students the ability to apply what they have learned,” said KHS Assistant Vice Principal Jason Spear, who oversees the STEM Academy at Kokomo High School.
The new makerspace at Kokomo High School features a laser cutter, Guider 2S 3D Printer, Mobile Maker Storage Tables for student work, soldering irons and electronics benches, a sewing machine, tools, and storage for various consumables. STEM Kits targeted at expanding the computer science skills of high school students, including Arduino and IoT Kits, also were designed into the makerspace. “The makerspace at Kokomo High School was designed to be used by any content area teacher. An art teacher, an English teacher, or a math teacher … any educator can use the space to bring learning to life,” said Amber Hudson, Education Director for 1st Maker Space. A 360-degree view of the Kokomo High School makerspace can be found here.
Kokomo High School officially opened its makerspace in February 2021 and 1st Maker Space Co-founder Kim Brand helped lead the Opening Day celebration. Throughout the day, Brand helped dozens of KHS teachers cut their own nametags using the laser cutter. A digital album of pictures can be found here.
The new makerspace was also featured in the local Kokomo Tribune. That article can be found here.
Kokomo High School officials worked closely with several community and corporate partners to work towards their vision of creating experiential learning opportunities. The administration and teacher leadership teams worked with Equitable Education Solutions to create new STEM units that could be applied across several content areas. Equitable Education Solutions has helped Kokomo High School implement these units through targeted professional development, as well as coaching. The team also is a participant in the Gear UP Grant, which is facilitated through Purdue University. This makerspace also builds on a makerspace in the local community, SHAK Makerspace.
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