Using Electronics to Craft

How are electronics viable additions to “crafting” for today’s young person?

Using electronics to craft is a way to combine art, design, and science, further supporting the problem-solving attitude that so many of these emerging technologies promote. It allows students to use their creativity and imagination to create will learning and exploring with science and math.

I can really see using electronics to craft in a MakerSpace in my classroom. It would be fun to use circuit stickers from Chibitronics or using squishy circuits to introduce simple circuits to even the youngest of students and then offer them space to create within a Genius Hour or Maker Space setting. As Leah Buechley (2012) says in her Ted Talk on how to sketch with electronics, using a conductive pen and circuit stickers you can now play, build, an sketch with electronics in a new way—anything that you can do with paper you can now do with electronics. I can imagine my second graders really enjoying making a picture or card light up or play music!

If we were to bring electronics into the classroom as an addition to crafting, it would require motivated teachers that were willing to learn something new. On the Squishy Circuits website, they have a whole set of videos on how to get started with learning about and teaching young children about squishy circuits, including how to make the conductive and insulating dough, squishy circuit basics, hardware and fun projects. There are even more tutorials available on the CrowdSupply website, but both of these options would require the teacher to be motivated to seek learning on their own.

 

 

Jie Qi. Interactive Light Painting: Pu Gong Ying Tu (Dandelion Painting). https://vimeo.com/40904471

 

Ted Talks (2012, Nov 15). Leah Buechley: How to sketch with electronics. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTBp0Z5GPeI

 

Squishy Circuits http://courseweb.stthomas.edu/apthomas/SquishyCircuits/videos2.htm

 

Bunnie & Jie Qi. Circuit Stickers. Retreived from: https://www.crowdsupply.com/chibitronics/circuit-stickers

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3 thoughts on “Using Electronics to Craft

  1. Kodiak Reading Teacher says:

    I would love to try using the paper electronics with my students, although I know with kinder it would probably need to be done in a smaller class. How fun would it be for the kids to come home with a craft made from paper circuits? I think you are right about teachers being willing to learn something new, and make time for it during the day, especially when this means that something else might have to be postponed. However, after watching the tutorial videos on Chibitronics I feel like the paper electronics are much easier to learn then Mine Craft or the coding! But I much prefer to work with my hands so maybe that is why I think that.

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  2. daysha2016 says:

    I have to admit that I’m one of those people that is intimidated by circuits and its probably because I never had any experience with them. After watching and reading all of the resources this week I felt like I could make circuits. I mean I can draw with a pen so this is something I can totally learn about and teach kids. I love the idea of squishy circuits. I made some of the play dough this week for my daughter who is 1. I still need to buy the electronic pieces but I love that I can do circuits with her even though she is so young. Of course she won’t understand why for awhile but we can still have fun playing with it!

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  3. josies677blog says:

    Kayla,
    I didn’t write about the squishy circuit technology in my blog, but I thought that invention was a great way to create on Makersday as well. The conductive pen could be incorporated into most lesson plans. The circuit sticker options would be a great addition to paper projects.

    Josie

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