Author: Cassia Fernandez

Cassia Fernandez teaches programming and physical computing to elementary and middle school students at the Sidarta Institute and public schools in São Paulo. As a graduate student, she is creating and evaluating physical computing activities based on a tinkering approach to foster students’ creative confidence. She holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from the University of São Paulo and co-created a low cost physical computing toolkit that has been used in brazilian schools and in her academic research. She is currently collaborating with the Lifelong Kindergarten Group from the MIT Media Lab in a joint research project related to creative approaches for introducing physical computing activities in brazilian public schools settings.

Fostering creativity in classrooms

During the past years I’ve been deeply interested in creativity. In this post I’ll try to condense some strategies aimed to stimulate children’s creative expression in the classroom that I’ve tested in my physical programming classes, and analyzed during my master’s research. Most of the strategies presented here are not based merely on personal insights,… Read more »

Papert’s Eight Big Ideas translation to portuguese (Oito Grandes Ideias)

Recently, Sylvia Martinez (our FabLearn mentor) invited us Fellows to translate Seymour Papert’s Eight Big Ideas Behind the Constructionist Learning Laboratory to other languages. As Sylvia describes in her blog: “In 1999, Seymour Papert, the father of educational technology, embarked on his last ambitious institutional research project when he created the constructionist, technology-rich, project-based,  multi-aged… Read more »

Pinball Activity

I teach an introductory physical programming course in curricular classes at a public school in São Paulo for middle school students who have never programmed before. In my classes, I try to propose activities suited for iteration and that provide possibilities for multiple pathways in the creation process through a tinkering approach. In this post… Read more »

Megachanges and programming curricula

Seymour Papert of the MIT Media Lab, whose ideas strongly influenced the maker movement, was among the first to propose that computers could be powerful tools to support learning, allowing kids to express themselves in meaningful ways and to reflect on their own thinking process while creating programs. In his speech at the the World… Read more »