About this Course
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Beginner Level

English

Subtitles: English

100% online

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.

Beginner Level

English

Subtitles: English

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

Week
1
1 hour to complete

Introduction to Tinkering

What is tinkering? What does it mean to you? Is it different from engineering or other forms of making? We'll explore these questions in the readings and forums while getting a sneak preview of the activities we'll be sharing over the following modules.

...
3 videos (Total 10 min), 5 readings
5 readings
Week Overview10m
Your turn10m
Course Overview10m
Course format10m
Credit Requirements10m
Week
2
1 hour to complete

Marble Machines

Let's get started with our first activity! Marble Machines are creative ball-run contraptions made from familiar materials. This week we will show you the activity in action, talk about its design, then discuss in detail how to build your own Marble Machines set. We also hear from the artist who inspired the activity, and Eleanor Duckworth will share her pedagogical perspective.

...
5 videos (Total 37 min), 2 readings
5 videos
Making Marble Machines7m
Pedagogical Perspective: Eleanor Duckworth5m
2 readings
Week Overview: Iteration with Marble Machines10m
Your Turn10m
Week
3
1 hour to complete

CARDBOARD AUTOMATA

This week, we turn our attention to Cardboard Automata: inspired by crank-operated mechanical devices that tell miniature stories with movement and narrative, these simple but engaging contraptions are often a vehicle for personal expression and humor.

...
15 videos (Total 32 min), 2 readings
15 videos
Making Cardboard Automata5m
Pedagogical Perspective: Hubert Dyasi5m
Cardboard Automata Mechanism 133s
Cardboard Automata Mechanism 232s
Cardboard Automata Mechanism 330s
Cardboard Automata Mechanism 431s
Cardboard Automata Mechanism 533s
Revealed: Mechanism 129s
Reveal: Mechanism 226s
Reveal: Mechanism 328s
Reveal: Mechanism 437s
Reveal: Mechanism 535s
2 readings
Week Overview: Creative Expression with Cardboard Automata10m
Your Turn10m
Week
4
1 hour to complete

Chain Reaction

A Chain Reaction machine is a deceptively simple concept, but one that allows for an incredibly complex and deep investigation into something we experience every day: the relationship between cause and effect. It brings all of a tinkerer’s skills to bear to improvise, build, troubleshoot, and imagine a problem and its solution!

...
7 videos (Total 45 min), 2 readings
7 videos
Making Chain Reactions7m
Pedagogical Perspective: Bernie Zubrowski5m
Chain Reaction Connections4m
Arthur Ganson Considers Chain Reactions1m
2 readings
Week Overview: Problem Posing with Chain Reaction10m
Your Turn10m
4.9
2 ReviewsChevron Right

Top reviews from Tinkering Fundamentals: Motion and Mechanisms

By JQAug 5th 2017

The class was both fun and interesting. Thanks so much!

Instructors

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Mike Petrich

Director, Informal Learning Center
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Karen Wilkinson

Director, Tinkering Studio
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Luigi Anzivino

Professional Development Lead
Tinkering Studio

About Exploratorium

The Exploratorium is a twenty-first-century learning laboratory, an eye-opening, always-changing, playful place to explore and tinker. For more than forty years, we’ve built creative, thought-provoking exhibits, tools, programs, and experiences that ignite curiosity, encourage exploration, and lead to profound learning. We use the same tools and approaches to design compelling professional development programs for teachers ranging from novice to expert, elementary to high school, and formal and informal, in fields of science, math, and engineering. To date the Exploratorium has provided in-depth, multi-year programming to thousands of educators from over 450 school districts in 47 states and in many different countries....

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Once you enroll for a Certificate, you’ll have access to all videos, quizzes, and programming assignments (if applicable). Peer review assignments can only be submitted and reviewed once your session has begun. If you choose to explore the course without purchasing, you may not be able to access certain assignments.

  • When you purchase a Certificate you get access to all course materials, including graded assignments. Upon completing the course, your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

More questions? Visit the Learner Help Center.