Paulo Blikstein is an assistant professor at StanfordUniversity School of Education and (by courtesy) Computer Science Department,where he directs the Transformative Learning Technologies Lab(tltl.stanford.edu). Blikstein’s research focus on how new technologies candeeply transform the learning of science, engineering, and mathematics. Hecreates and researches cutting-edge educational technologies, such as computermodeling, robotics, digital fabrication, and rapid prototyping, creating hands-onlearning environments in which children learn science and mathematics bybuilding sophisticated projects and devices. He also focuses on the applicationof data-mining and machine learning for the assessment of hands-on,project-based learning. Blikstein has recently spearheaded the FabLab@Schoolproject, building advanced digital fabrication labs in middle and high-schoolsin the US, Russia, Thailand and India. Paulo is also the Founder and PrincipalInvestigator of the newly-created Lemann Center for Brazilian Education atStanford, a 10-year initiative to transform public education in Brazil. Arecipient of the National Science Foundation Early Career Award and a GoogleFaculty Award, he holds a PhD. from Northwestern University, an MSc. from the MITMedia Lab, and a B.S. and M.Eng. in Engineering from the University of SãoPaulo, Brazil.
The FabLab@School project
Despite the potential impact of FabLabs in education, theyare mostly focused on adults, entrepreneuruship, and product design. TheFabLab@School, created by Prof. Paulo Blikstein at Stanford University, wascreated to address that issue. It is a new type of FabLab especially designedfor school and children, with several special characteristics:
Aspecial focus on education and on the connection with disciplines likesciences, math, and engineering.
Lower cost of implementation and ownership and intensive use ofrepurposed and low-cost materials.
Specially-designed teacher preparation materials and workshops, as wellas activities for children to engage in cutting-edge scientific investigation.
Special equipment and software for science and math.
Easy to use, age-appropriate robotics and sensing equipment.
Impact measurement and learning metrics especially designed forproject-based environments.
A pilot FabLab@School was built at Stanford University onJan 2009, and the first FabLab@School in a school was inaugurated in June 2011,at the 1502 IMEI High-School in Moscow, Russia through the generous funding ofEuan Baird, and implemented in partnership with the SEED foundation. The thirdFabLab@School opened in March at the Castilleja School in Palo Alto(http://tltl.stanford.edu/news/science-lab-reinvented). FabLab@School #4 isunder construction in East Palo Alto, USA, and FabLab@School #5 is underconstruction in Bangkok, Thailand. (http://tltl.stanford.edu/projects/fablabschoolhttp://tltl.stanford.edu/projects/fablabschool)