[Activity 4] Visit a Learning Space


Welcome to week 4 activity!

This week, we invite you to explore a learning space – how does it support collaboration and sharing?

It can be any place where people are learning or making together - online or offline, formal or informal, big or small, familiar to you or new - you choose!

Once you’re in the space - think about the ways in which is support collaboration and sharing.

  • What kind of activities are people doing together?
  • How does the set up and design of the space support sharing and building on each other’s ideas?
  • Is there anything you would change to make it more collaborative?

Post a picture (or video), a short description and, above all, your reflections!
Looking forward to hearing about your visits!

A version of this post is also available in Italiano, Português, Español, 日本語 (Japanese), עברית (Hebrew)

listed #2


I’m on the board of a Makerspace in town and our set up is somewhat similar to what Mitch shares - we have lots of open tables in the center of the room - and then along the walls are all the ‘stations’ - 3-D printing, machining, computer design, stained glass making, etc. I’ve noticed that people often wander to see what others are doing and informally chat around workstations and/or even the center tables. It’s not unusual for people to bring in some random project to work on at center table and for others to chat and share ideas or just comment on great project. The space itself is the opposite of fancy - it’s in a warehouse type setting (not the cool, updated ones) and has a lot of rag-tag chairs and tables and while great attention is put into keeping things organized, it still looks a little bit like a work in progress. And as much as I would like to see some more updated facilities and supplies (chairs with wheels would be awesome!), I also sense that there is a magic in walking into a space that looks like ‘stuff is being made’. I believe it suggests that things are not too precious to touch and that this is a place where people roll up their sleeves and make things. So as our Makerspace looks to someday find a more suitable spot (for a variety of reasons), I think we’ll have to keep in mind how we keep this sense of ‘creative mess-making’ alive without going too far in either direction (too much junk out vs too pristine and clean). And the culture of helping - of having people who just enjoy making hanging out at the space certain days a week to just help people with projects - that love of collaboration and support seems to be regenerative. And lastly, as noted above, I’d find a new location that is more accessible, has access to outside light, and allows us to market and welcome a wider and more diverse audience (including youth!). (I will try to post a pic soon! :smile:


The learning space that I’ve chosen is a computer lab at my university. There are four pods of six computers, three computers on each side of each pod. Every computer station has a chair that can roll with it. This helps collaboration by making it easy for people to roll around to different computers. However, two computers at each pod have dividers cutting them off from the other four computers, making it more difficult for collaboration between the person working at that station and other students. If I could change it, I would take away these dividers.

There are two whiteboards, one at the front of the room and another that can roll around. The whiteboards help people collaborate by taking them away from their computer screens. People often don’t erase what they’ve written, so other people can add to what is on the board after the original creators have left. This often happens with drawings that have been left on one of the boards.

On any given day, there will be many students working on projects together in this lab. You can see students learning from each other as they collaborate, teaching others new computer applications or new commands in applications they’ve used before.

To make this space more collaborative, I would change the walls of the computer lab. Right now, they are completely blank. I think that adding more whiteboards or filling the walls with posters with helpful information about how students can use the computers would add a lot to the room. Another thing that you could add to the wall is a bulletin board, which would give students another method of communicating with students who are not currently in the lab. This could be a way that students could find new collaborators whose schedules don’t put them in the lab at the same time.


In most of the Asian countries, people spend 1/3 of their life time in schools. So schools are the best space where we share our thoughts and ideas in a collaborative manner and especially in schools , mostly all categories of persons get chances.Comparitivly like US (Schools), we need some changes in our schools.

In classes most important is student participation. So that, in schools classes should be arranged like this as given fig below. We make the students in a group. The learning format varied from direct instruction, to group activities, to clock partner work. Allow them to shaping the content activity depending on our interests and needs. Discuss some relevant topic /facts ( before start the discussion, gave the topic and some space to come up with their ideas), allow them to share their ideas or thoughts or wish (Whether it is correct or wrong that is not a matter) in a collaborative manner as by learning and working from the peer. Most probably that teachers handles the class pays more attention, caring, respect the ideas, and guide them in proper way (helps the students for their creations/invention innovatively). Experience is the power and the joy of peer – based learning. If we feel the students that learning can and should be enjoyable! Then automatically student’s interest on their studies comes up .This method explicit choice is to supports them for social side of learning.

Now a day’s, collaboration aspects require for your carrier or social communities. So this type of learning in schools helpful to lead the social life/ Activity.


Hi Everyone,

My learning space I have chosen is my school where I work as a Robotic trainer.

The activity which involved more collaboration and sharing was Shark tank activity. For the middle school children it was a team or a group activity which involves more than 2 members. The team members who were an aspiring entrepreneurs presented their ideas in a PPT to the Sharks and it was a mock activity with the mock sharks. The actual shark tank has been planned on March 6, 2018.

The teams were involved in creative discussions and innovative ideas were the main focus.


We are playing in team at
It’s a coding game based on the basic concepts of programming.


For my Learning Space I decided to reflect on my university’s new learning management system (LMS). We just transferred to a new platform, and it’s taking some getting used to. Much of our learning and sharing takes place in online discussion forums (much like the one we are using here). An interesting feature of our new LMS is the inability (at least with the settings that the university has currently selected) to view prior posts when responding. I never realized just how critical it is to be able to “see” another’s words in an online platform in order to construct a thoughtful and meaningful reply. This isn’t all that different than the challenges many of us face when struggling to “hear” someone on the phone versus face-to-face, I suppose.

We are also experiencing the need for multiple “clicks” in order to reply to others. This is making conversations (and associated sharing/learning) more cumbersome and less “fun”.

I knew I was experiencing these frustrations (as are others) and had attributed them to “change” and assumed/hoped they would begin to feel more natural. Thanks to this exercise, though, I am looking at the new platform from a new lens, and considering user challenges in new ways.
While it’s my hope that much of this is due to our current settings (and that improvements will be made with time), the impact on our students’ experience is still a big concern for the present. Thank you for the food for thought!


What a great picture! I really like how the student on the right has leaned in/over his classmate. Very nice! I’m not familiar with flipquiz. I’m going to check it out. Thanks!


Have fun at the event! Sounds like a great experience!


Thanks for your reply.
Try this one as well! Flip Quiz




The learning space that I recently found myself in is perhaps unconventional. I was at a climbing gym yesterday and it struck me that even though it’s not a new environment for me, I could apply some of the things that this activity is looking for.

For example, the gym is quite big and often very busy. On this day, I was there on my own, planning on working on some bouldering problems and using just the Autobelays. Climbing is often not considered an individual sport since there is usually a climber and a belayer involved. As I was there on my own this day, I found it to be quite challenging to be working through problems and up routes without anyone’s help. It is most definitely not impossible, as I was successful most of the time but I did find it very frustrating sometimes not being able to get feedback or guidance from someone on the ground. Often times it’s hard to see where you next move is when you’re up on the wall and unable to see all the holds.

The gym itself is very conducive to collaboration and sharing. As an example, the bouldering sections of the gym have benches in them so as people are resting or waiting their turn they have somewhere to sit which often will keep people there longer, and gives them a chance to watch others on the wall working through problems.

Another example of this is that the groupings of Autobelays (which requires no belayer–for solo climbers like myself on this day) are first of all, not standing alone, so solo climbers can consult each other on their climbs, but secondly there are multiple groupings of Autobelays sprinked throughout the gym. So for the same reason, if someone is climbing with a partner next to a solo climber on an Autobelay, they can help each other, both consulting the belayer on the ground and also the climber on the wall with them.

Lastly, this gym has a community board near the change rooms where climbers can write their contact information on a board if they are looking for new climbing partners. This is great not only if you are a solo climber and need a belay partner, but also if you have a climbing partner and perhaps want to meet new people with different experience levels. Next to the “name” and “phone number” headings, there is a “climbing preference/level” heading where climbers can write down the type of climbing they do, which is great for the idea of building on strengths and learning from each other.

The only thing I would change in this situation is perhaps to have the staff circulate a little more throughout the gym and make themselves more available to collaboration themselves. Perhaps have one staff designated to being the “I’m available” person on each shift. These people often come with great experience and could probably be great to collaborate with and learn from.

I do have to admit, I’ve never dissected a day of climbing like this before. It’s really made me consider how spaces are used for learning, even if they are perhaps not traditional learning spaces.


Thanks, yes it was a great experience!


Hi …the work space i have chosen is the Robotix lab in our school. Students come here build their own robot and experience the fun of learning with the peers ,they share their ideas among them and come out with innovative inventions.This space makes them to think, plan and create and also recreate their ideas with friends.


Workspace I have chosen is school in singapore.There ,they bring up with Inklewriter is another twist on the collaborative writing idea. A child will start a story while other children can change the content of that story by creating branches out. The online platform manages the different branches that came out from the main story, which makes it easy for users to follow and contribute.3709_full


Hi all,
The learning space i would like to share about is my makerspace lab where i work as a trainer.Here children will be given a problem(task) and they should come up with solutions. They have free access to the materials available in the lab and can use them to design the solutions.
I would like to share a few pics on different types of houses made by children (as the task was to build a place for the gingerbread man to hide)


Hi all,
The learning space i have chosen is the Robotix lab in my school. Students come to the lab with full enjoyment to build their own robot, to do coding, animations etc…, they will learn something new every week and experience the fun of learning with the peers . Everyone have their own ideas to implement . At last, they will share their ideas in front of all the students. This space makes them to improve their thinking ability.


Hi everyone, I’ve been doing some research this year – due in June – with questions that involve Scratch and physical computing (e.g., Scratch with sensor boards). Meanwhile, in Scratch classes that I teach, I’ve increasingly had younger students enrolled, as young as age 6. Accordingly, for this reflection, I’m very narrowly focused on the space, feel, and utility of the PicoBoard.

The PicoBoard offers an almost overwhelming amount of information, and so many ways of interfacing with Scratch. This is great, but it requires children to clear a certain threshold of understanding before many of the available technologies “open up”. Some of the more readily available concepts may get lost until that threshold is reached. I also find that the device isn’t very comfortable to hold – and this is truer for younger children. So I’ve been working on adapting it to make it more suitable for younger ages.

One of the most basic, important, and foundational ideas that we can teach through Scratch, I think, is the difference between Boolean expressions (true/false, or yes/no, or 0/1) vs. numeric inputs that are part of a wide array of numbers. When the latter inputs are output by a dial, I believe they’re generally called “analog”, although perhaps we have digital interfaces acting as analogies of analog devices? (If any one can clarify this, please do!)

Here is one example of devices that I’ve made – by repurposing items from a Goodwill store – that isolate buttons and potentiometers. There’s a button mounted in a salad spoon and a dial mounted in a salad fork. Both are easy to hold, and they differentiate between the two kinds of outputs, while suggesting that the two are also closely related.

I shared these devices with a student recently, and asked “Which – the dial or the button – do you think the arrow keys on your keyboard are like?” The student, after some thought, answered that arrow keys are similar to the dial, “because they turn left and right, like a steering wheel”. This kind of dissonance is wonderful to identify and work through by more deeply studying the utilities afforded by the PicoBoard.

As a follow up to such a question, I would want to ask a child to make two games, one which involves steering using buttons, and one which involves steering using a dial.

Another example is this Reed switch & magnet combination, mounted inside a nutcracker. This allows a user to measure the angle of the nutcracker at the point at which the circuit opens/closes. You can also mount additional magnets and measure different results. Perhaps more importantly, it is a devices that would interface well with a game.

In an early childhood classroom I would like to imagine this equipment stored in something that is beautiful to look at, warm to touch, and easy to hold and carry.