Full Papers

The full papers will be presented during a 15 minutes presentation and followed by a short panel discussion at the end of each session.


Session I: Variety of learning opportunities

Wednesday, June 2, 11:00-12:00

Paper 1: Designing Effective Playful Experiences for Sustainability Awareness in Schools and Makerspaces

Georgios Mylonas, Industrial Systems Institute, Athena Research and Innovation Center, Greece and Computer
Technology Institute & Press “Diophantus”, Greece
Joerg Hofstaetter and Andreas Friedl, ovos media, Austria
Michail Giannakos, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway

Sustainability awareness in young people, and especially students, is growing in importance. To this end, serious games and playful experiences are used to enable students and teachers to actively study climate change issues and respective challenges. Many approaches have been proposed, ranging from quiz-based web applications to full-blown game experiences. We discuss several related design aspects through the lens of our own experience with gamification inside educational environments. Our results derive from the use of a playful web application focusing on sustainability and energy issues, developed within the GAIA project and used in 25 schools with 3762 registered users. We also present results from surveys answered by 723 students and 32 educators. Our findings show that a simple playful experience can yield good results within educational environments when taking into account their constraints, integrating the intervention to schools’ everyday life and placing it within a strategy that includes other tools.


Paper 2: Entrepreneurship Education Meets FabLab: Lessons Learned With Teenagers

Heidi Hartikainen, Leena Ventä-Olkkonen, Marianne Kinnula, Netta Iivari,
University of Oulu

Digital fabrication, making and entrepreneurship education all have potential to empower children and increase their abilities to participate and shape the society and digitalization within, and act as active “protagonists” instead of passive consumers. While the potential of these educational trends has been acknowledged, they have mostly been studied separately and without specific focus on challenges involved. We have conducted a business innovation project with teenagers at school, combining elements of digital fabrication, making and entrepreneurship education. Our qualitative, data-driven analysis focused on the process and the challenges involved in the endeavor. As a result, we generate a list of lessons learned associated with teenagers adopting the role of a protagonist, driving business innovation. Our main findings relate to the lessons learned on the importance of balancing the making activities with the entrepreneurial aspects and negotiating the roles and responsibilities between the adult participants.


Paper 3: VotestratesML: A High School Learning Tool for Exploring Machine Learningand its Societal Implications

Magnus Høholt Kaspersen, Karl-Emil Kjær Bilstrup, Maarten Van Mechelen,
Arthur Hjorth, Niels Olof Bouvin, Marianne Graves Petersen,
Department of Computer Science, Aarhus University, Denmark


The increased use of Artificial Intelligence, and in particular Machine Learning (ML) raises the need for widespread AI literacy, in three particular areas related to ML; understanding how ML works, the process behind creating ML models, and the ability to reflect on its personal and societal implications. Existing ML learning tools focus primarily on the first two areas, and to a lesser degree the third. In order to address this, we designed VotestratesML; a tool allowing K-12 students to build models and make predictions based on real world voting data. Based on in-situ deployments of VotestratesML, we reflect on opportunities and challenges for engaging K-12 students in understanding and reflecting on ML. We find that the design of VotestratesML supports students’ engagement in all three areas of ML, through grounding ML in a known subject area and allowing for collaboration and competition.

Presentation slides


Session II: Maker education and pedagogues

Thursday, June 3, 09:15-10:15

Paper 4: The Connected Qualities of Design Thinking and Maker Education practices in Early Education: A narrative review

Annemiek Veldhuis, Department of Industrial Design, Eindhoven University of Technology
Bernice D’Anjou, Educational Communication and Technology, New York University Steinhardt
Tilde Bekker, Department of Industrial Design, Eindhoven University of Technology
Ioanna Garefi, STIMMULI for Social Change
Panagiota Digkoglou, STIMMULI for Social Change
Georgia Safouri, Aristotelio College
Silvia Remotti, PACO design collaborative
Emer Beamer Cronin, Designathon Works
Madalina Bouros, AllGrow

Design Thinking (DT) and Maker Education (ME) are fairly new approaches that aim to equip students with skills for the 21st century. As DT and ME both involve a design process, these might be combined. To guide design processes that aim to combine DT and ME in early education, we review 28 formal and non-formal educational practices aimed at children 8 to 14 years old that have incorporated DT or ME over the past 10 years. We analyse their qualities in terms of their Objectives, Learning Activities, the Teacher’s Role, and Assessment Activities. From our findings, we develop an overview that showcases the connections between these qualities within the selected practices. We found that not all components were aligned well. Therefore, we outline the DT and ME Curriculum Blueprint, a tool aimed to support reflection on the alignment between these components in the development of DT and ME practices in early education.


Paper 5: Scaling Digital Design Literacy in K-9 Through the Fellowship Program

Katrine H. Kanstrup, Marie-Louise Wagner, Maarten Van Mechelen, Ole S. Iversen, Christian Dindler
Center for Computational Thinking and Design, Aarhus University

We report from a research-based professional development program – the fellowship program – aimed at scaling digital design literacy in Danish K-9 education. The fellowship program was designed to engage with experienced K-9 teachers to provide them with the knowledge, experience and resources needed to further develop digital design literacy in their local school environment and to create networks for continuous exchange between researchers, educators of teachers and in-service teachers. In this paper we present the motivation, strategy, partnerships and execution of the fellowship program and report from survey results assessing participants gains and learning outcomes. We position the fellowship program within the broader discourse of leveraging teacher training in computing education and digital design literacy. We suggest that the fellowship format has a number of qualities that make it a potentially valuable addition to established teacher training initiatives. This includes the establishment of feedback loops and networks between researchers and practitioners, scaling through local peer-to-peer training, a modular and agile setup and the collaboration between educators of teachers and in-service teachers.

Presentation slides


Paper 6: Becoming a Maker Pedagogue: Exploring Practices of Making and Developing a Maker Mindset for Preschools

Sophie Landwehr Sydow, Stockholm University (DSV) and Södertörn University (NMT), Sweden
Anna Åkerfeldt, Stockholm University, Department of Mathematics and Science Education, Sweden
Per Falk, Sundbybergs Kommun, Sweden

Making has with its mindset and hands-on agenda found ways into all levels of education. From primary school to higher education, in after-school curricula and public places of learning, making has made a considerable impact. In early childhood education, teachers and their professional development are however less in focus. We present a municipality-driven project of training nine preschool teachers with a maker mindset. Our data builds on teachers’ experience and practice, shared in two workshops and 16 blog posts. The pedagogues’ reflections of their own and learners’ actions make way for how ‘making’ impacts them as educators. We use Resnick’s four P’s: Projects, Peers, Passion, Play and contribute Places and Presentation as additional elements of creative learning. We show that developing a maker mindset entails openness, curiosity, co-creation, responsiveness and the willingness to include technology and materials into professional practice, which is key towards becoming a maker pedagogue.

Presentation slides


Session III: Challenges and emotions in learning experiences

Wednesday, June 3, 16:00-17:00

Paper 7: Faces Don’t Lie: Analysis of Children’s Facial expressions during Collaborative Coding

Kshitij Sharma, Sofia Papavlasopoulou, Michail Giannakos,
Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway 

Educational research has used the information extracted from facial expressions to explain learning performance in a variety of educational settings like collaborative learning. Leveraging this, we extracted the emotions of frustration, confusion and boredom from videos with children aged 13-16 years old while they were collaborating to create games using Scratch. After we computed the groups’ coding performance, based on the created artifacts, we divided them into high and low performance and compared them on the basis of individual emotions’ duration and the transitions among the emotions. The results show that the children from the high performing teams show more confusion and frustration and more often from confusion and frustration to delight and neutral. The low performing teams show more boredom and move to this emotion from any other. Based on the results, we suggest implications both for the instructors and students.

Presentation slides

Paper 8: Frustration as an opportunity for learning: Review of literature

Andreina Yulis San Juan and Yumiko Murai,
Faculty of Education, Simon Fraser University

Frustration has been often observed during makerspace activities; however, only a few research studies have examined its importance during the maker process. In this literature review, we examine empirical studies where frustration has been observed in makerspaces, specifically looking at the potential of frustration to motivate learning opportunities in these spaces. We identify circumstances that lead learners to experience frustration and ways in which frustration can be used to achieve better learning outcomes in makerspaces. Based on the literature, we propose recommendations for educators and researchers on how frustration can be reoriented and used as positive reinforcement to help learners complete their activities in makerspaces.

Presentation slides

Paper 9: Facilitating Online Distributed Critical Making: Lessons Learned

Yumiko Murai and Azadeh Adibi,
Faculty of Education, Simon Fraser University
Alissa N. Antle, Alexandra Kitson, Yves Candau, Zoe Dao-Kroeker, John Desnoyers-Stewart and Katrien Jacobs
School of Interactive Arts & Technology, Simon Fraser University

The global pandemic has brought numerous challenges for educators who take a maker-centered approach, whose instruction involves direct engagement with materials through collaborative and exploratory social interactions. Many educators have found creative ways to address the obstacles of being remote. However, inciting critical reflection through making, already difficult during in-person settings, has become an even greater challenge in remote settings. This paper reports on the lessons learned from a two-week online afterschool maker workshop where participants worked on a maker project being in remote locations, while engaged in critical reflections on ethical implications of biowearable devices. The results showed preliminary evidence that participants were able to produce a prototype and engaged in critical reflection on the ethical issues of biowearables. We also found that while online environments offer limited social cues and flexibility, access to multiple communication channels enabled just-in-time facilitation for critical reflection.

Presentation slides