Great people discuss ideas... The goal of my class is to use computers to promote the power of powerful ideas. The power of your ideas and imagination are priceless. To get people to enjoy the power of watching their own ideas come to life is profound and life-changing.
"For what is important when we give children a theorem to use is not that they should memorize it. What matters most is that by growing up with a few very powerful theorems one comes to appreciate how certain ideas can be used as tools to think with over a lifetime. One learns to enjoy and to respect the power of powerful ideas. One learns that the most powerful idea of all is the idea of powerful ideas." - Seymour Papert
Devin and I recently went to Mexico to test our kit and educational program!
We had been hoping to bring the robots on trips, and a cool opportunity came up! Dr.Davidson told us she had a connection in Mexico who was interested in Makerspaces and thought our kit would be great for something he was doing.
So we wrote an email and got some exciting news. An opportunity to teach about 100 people during a short week stay in Guadalajara! We were lucky to connect with Dr.Jorge Sanabria at the University of Guadalajara, we spoke online and just a few short weeks later he welcomed us to his lab at the university in person.
I got my tickets Tuesday, packed as many robot prototypes as I could at the time, canceled any prior engagements and left Wednesday morning.
The flight and layover together were about 13 hours and I got off the plane and arrived at my hostel around 11pm. I had no idea what to expect but the weather was beautiful and Guadalajara seemed full of life.
As soon as I arrived I dropped off my stuff at the front desk of the hostel and went for a taco that was truly amazing! I went back to the hostel exhausted hoping to go straight to sleep. I shared a room with 16 other travelers and I tried to make as little noise as possible as I stuffed cans full of robots into the metal lockers with everyone sleeping around me (Sorry! -Canadian).
The next day I would be teaching my first lesson, possibly in Spanish? I had very little idea of what would happen, or how we could teach 40 students with our 8 kits and a bag of sensors. My only thought was "There is no way for this to go wrong really. Whatever happens this will be a great learning experience and a way to see how this all works!". All experience is good experience, right?
I woke up early and walked straight to the University with a backpack full of robots. When I got there Dr.Sanabria and his team greeted me warmly and briefly as we packed up the bus to go teach at a local public high school. It appeared I might be teaching in Spanish with a mix of slow English. I asked for many keywords on the way! My Spanish is very limited, I was about to teach in a foreign country, I was very nervous, and excited.