One of the key aspects of teaching our children to be innovative thinkers and learners is giving them oppotunrities to be creative, innovative and resourceful. The Makey Makey is the perfect technological tool for fostering these skills.
Makey Makeys are fun, engaging and super easy to use (they really are!), and as the name implies their key purpose is enable the process of making. But what is a Makey Makey? How can you use it? And more importantly how can you incorporate them in student learning? This blog post explores the awesomeness of Makey Makeys.
What is a Makey Makey?
A Makey Makey is simple circuit board allowing objects to connect with computer programs using closed circuit electrical signals. Makey Makey’s are designed for kids and as plug and play devices, which means you can plug all the parts together and begin using the Makey Makey. You do not need any programming or electronics knowledge to start using the Makey Makey. However, from a teacher’s perspective, it is a good idea to brush up on closed circuits so you can explain to your students how the Makey Makey works.
So a Makey Makey creates a closed circuit when you connect it to a conductive material, which can be an everyday object, a computer program and a yourself, to complete the circuit.
How do I get a Makey Makey to work?
Makey Makeys really are plug and play devices. If you connect your Alligator Clips to the right spots on your Makey Makey, then it will work. As with all things in our digital age there are a plethora of YouTubers who regularly post videos of Makey Makey projects and easy how to guides.
As a rough guide you simply attach your alligator clips to the right spot on the circuit board, you attach the other end of the alligator clip to a conductive and make sure your the Makey Makey is plugged into your computer using the red USB cable.
So how can I use a Makey Makey with my students?
Here, social media and the web are your best friends, because you do not have to reinvent the well, especially when first stating out. There is an extraordinary amount of resources and lesson ideas out there to guide you in incorporating Makey Makey’s in your classroom. Here are a few awesomely fun and easy lesson ideas for using Makey Makeys in your classroom: