From an early age, I was fortunate to have amazing mentors and educators in both formal and informal settings. Thus, I always knew that I wanted to teach. In particular, I have long been fascinated with exploring ways to interest people of all ages, particularly those who perhaps don't typically gravitate towards STEM, in engineering and learning how to make things. I think the most important thing is helping students understand what they are interested in and how to pursue ways to pursue that interest, even when it isn't directly tied to their class work. I've have fantastic interactions with engineering students who've worked with me on research projects.

Teaching how to learn

I consider myself lucky that I get to work with both PK-12 educators and engineering undergraduates. For both of these groups, I try to share how to approach challenges with a full "toolbox" of techniques and knowledge, but also with curiosity and playfulness. I have always seen engineering as a creative discipline. The best solutions often come from asking lots of questions, being curious, and allowing yourself to play with ideas.

Examples of "playful learning."
Squishy Circuits: http://courseweb.stthomas.edu/apthomas/SquishyCircuits/
Engineering and Circus: http://www.prism-magazine.org/mar12/tt_01.cfm
My work as the founding executive director of the Maker Education Initiative: http://www.makered.org

One of the most important things I can teach my students is how to learn. We live in a rapidly changing world and technology changes seemingly daily. Thus, I strive to instill in my students a love of learning and an ability to seek out the resources that they need to learn what they want, and need, to learn.

Teaching and research

I love what I do, so while I put in long hours, it doesn't seem like a burden. For me the line between teaching and research is blurry. Many of my students later join me on research projects and my research is in in PK-12 Engineering Education and Engineering Design. Since those are also the topics that I teach, there is a nice feedback loop between my work, my research, and the things I do for fun and with my family.

ASEE membership

I love having access to the ASEE conference proceedings and the JEE articles. It allows me to keep current with what is going on in engineering education and also serves as a wonderful resource for my students, many of whom are PK-12 teachers. Being a member of ASEE reminds me how important it is to be the best engineering educator that I can. Meeting and reading the work of so many excellent educators inspires me to constantly evaluate my own teaching and research, looking for ways to improve.

Outside of work

I love making things with my daughters-- be that clothes, circuits, foods, or elaborate pillow forts!

From an early age, I was fortunate to have amazing mentors and educators in both formal and informal settings. Thus, I always knew that I wanted to teach. In particular, I have long been fascinated with exploring ways to interest people of all ages, particularly those who perhaps don't typically gravitate towards STEM, in engineering and learning how to make things. I think the most important thing is helping students understand what they are interested in and how to pursue ways to pursue that interest, even when it isn't directly tied to their class work. I've have fantastic interactions with engineering students who've worked with me on research projects.

Teaching how to learn

I consider myself lucky that I get to work with both PK-12 educators and engineering undergraduates. For both of these groups, I try to share how to approach challenges with a full "toolbox" of techniques and knowledge, but also with curiosity and playfulness. I have always seen engineering as a creative discipline. The best solutions often come from asking lots of questions, being curious, and allowing yourself to play with ideas.

Examples of "playful learning."
Squishy Circuits: http://courseweb.stthomas.edu/apthomas/SquishyCircuits/
Engineering and Circus: http://www.prism-magazine.org/mar12/tt_01.cfm
My work as the founding executive director of the Maker Education Initiative: http://www.makered.org

One of the most important things I can teach my students is how to learn. We live in a rapidly changing world and technology changes seemingly daily. Thus, I strive to instill in my students a love of learning and an ability to seek out the resources that they need to learn what they want, and need, to learn.

Teaching and research

I love what I do, so while I put in long hours, it doesn't seem like a burden. For me the line between teaching and research is blurry. Many of my students later join me on research projects and my research is in in PK-12 Engineering Education and Engineering Design. Since those are also the topics that I teach, there is a nice feedback loop between my work, my research, and the things I do for fun and with my family.

ASEE membership

I love having access to the ASEE conference proceedings and the JEE articles. It allows me to keep current with what is going on in engineering education and also serves as a wonderful resource for my students, many of whom are PK-12 teachers. Being a member of ASEE reminds me how important it is to be the best engineering educator that I can. Meeting and reading the work of so many excellent educators inspires me to constantly evaluate my own teaching and research, looking for ways to improve.

Outside of work

I love making things with my daughters-- be that clothes, circuits, foods, or elaborate pillow forts!