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Session Descriptions: Day 2 PM Block: Heath

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Maker Centered Learning--Why Not!
August 9, 1:00-2:30pm

Chris Gross
, Coach, FabNewport
Steve Heath, Executive Director, FabNewport

Josie MichaudDirector of Instructional Design, FabNewport
@FabNewport | Website

  • All Audiences
  • Audience cap: 25

We will create a maker space setting giving participants the opportunity to create and discuss what it feels like to integrate Maker Centered Learning in a K-12 in or out of school setting. We will provide resources and give participant the opportunity to explore our Apprentice Model for Learning.


Chris Gross earned an M.Ed from University of Connecticut in 2013. He has worked at the East Bay Met Regional Career and Technical Center for four years, serving as an advisor for 16 students from freshman year through graduation. He has a strong track record of securing community-based internships and developing personalized learning plans as part of his work at the Met School. Chris will join the FabNewport team in July of 2017 as a community integration specialist. 

Steve Heath is the founder and executive director of FabNewport. He has 25 years experience creating innovative learning environments in public and private schools in Boston, Chicago and Rhode Island. He’s an experienced journalist, community activist and a skilled connector with a passion for nurturing ideas.

Steve is certified League of American Bicyclists instructor, an accomplished athlete and coach. He is involved in several community efforts—Health Equity Zone, Working Cities, Catalyzing Newport--to improve opportunities for Newport’s neediest citizens. He is keen on supporting children, educators and schools interested in liberating the maker intrinsic in all of us.

Josie Michaud is Director of Instructional Design at FabNewport and has played a key role in shaping the direction of our community based learning. She helps to manage, develop, and instruct local programs such as the Makerspace at the Doctor Martin Luther King Center in Newport,  and in-school STEAM programs at All Saints Academy. She completed the URI AP CS professional development training and is presently teaching two sections of the ACN AP CS class to MET high school students here in our lab. Concurrently she is working to develop a universal badging and apprenticeship system that will help educators and students alike assess progression and completion of the many disciplines taught at FabNewport.

Josie earned her B.A. in anthropology from Wheaton, and after college taught in the education department for Brown University’s Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology. Working mainly with elementary and middle school students, she organized outreach programs at local schools and summer camps at the museum. Josie went on to  earn certification as a TESOL instructor and taught adults English as a Second Language for the International Institute in Providence. While she found that experience rewarding, she realized that her true passion was working with children. She took a position at Talbot Middle School in Fall River as a certified English Language Arts teacher for 6th and 7th graders. By year three at Talbot, her dedication and commitment resulted in being named Teacher of the Year for Fall River. She was also selected to participate in the highly lauded Mentoring in Action program through UMass Dartmouth which trains the best teachers to become mentors to their colleagues. Josie also went on to spearhead the successful grassroots effort, on the part of teachers and administrators, to officially make Talbot a STEAM school. Although Josie’s teaching career has been centered in language arts and social science, she believes that computer literacy, problem solving abilities and communication skills are needed across all academic disciplines.

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