I have observed the positive benefits of free range maker spaces and the limited benefits of pseudo maker spaces!
The problem with the "pseudo" spaces is the school timetable, not the educators that run them.
The design or computational process of;
Time needs to be created and preserved in the curriculum so these learning opportunities can happen without pressure. Educators are swamped with busy work and constant box ticking. Freedom from standardised assessment and generalised standards would free educators to facilitate real exploration. Self directed learning, reflection and feedback could then take centre stage.
I conduct workshops for school children and homeschooled children.
(General) observations over the last 12 months have been...
The "schooled" children wait politely to be lead through each step, they seldom take inspired action but wait for orders from above. When our time is up they are eager to "save" their work to "show" it to others for approval and that seems to be the main focus rather than taking risks to achieve a better outcome.
The homeschooled kids often race ahead with their own ideas, get stuck and frequently crash and burn! However, when they hit problems they don't wait to be rescued they (argue) and collaborate to find a solution. They won't leave when the session finishes, only when the aim has been achieved (or they are thrown out). They are not concerned with saving anything until they have nailed it and success is it's own reward. They push the project beyond the original brief every time and their ideas are usually so spot on I (humbled) always tweak my plans to incorporate them in my future sessions!
This is the person the marketplace says it wants!
So do I think this "difference" can be attributed to the educators of the "schooled" children?
Most educators I've met are open, eager to embrace new ideas & have the passionate desire to facilitate real connections and make a difference in their student's lives, but the system impedes their journey.
When I'm cleaning out a drawer my favourite method is to throw everything out and then only put back the items I know will be useful to me in the future. I create space and my attention and time is no longer wasted searching through junk to find a relevant item.
I allow you to make the connection between that drawer and the education system you may be working in!