Once again, my friends in the Preschool have been doing some of the brilliant student-centered work that takes place thanks to the Project Approach. This time around, the Pre-K students have been asking questions around camping. Here are some tweets about the Camping Project from the Pre-K class teachers, Kate Canady and Elizabeth Jones, along with my friend and MVPS CLIO Bo Adams, that have been fueling their students’ research and studies:


As part of their work, the students decided they needed maps and signs for their Learning Showcase because that is something that they see when they go camping and hiking. Their teachers approached me, and together we collaborated on a way to make these objects.

We decided to have the kids draw a map on several pieces of 11×17 paper so they were creating a large map. We then took the map apart and scanned it so we could then digitally shrink it and print out multiple copies. Here is the digitally recreate map:

The map created by students, reassembled digitally.

The map created by students, reassembled digitally.


For the signs and signposts, I created an Easel file that would carve out an arrow on Inventable’s Carvey, a desktop CNC router. Students then wrote the names of the landmarks on pieces of paper that had an arrow traced out on it. Those names were traced with a Sharpie and then scanned into a computer. From there, the image files were printed onto the laser cutter where the handwriting was engraved onto the arrows.

But the real fun came when the Pre-K student arrived in Studio(i) to finish off the build! After a demo of the Carvey, and a fascinating exploration of sawdust, the work began. Safety googles went on, and the nails and hammers came out. In short time, these busy little makers made exactly what they needed for their campsite.

Stay tuned for pictures from the Learning Showcase!



Some social media associated with this #MakerEd moment…


Wonder. Wander.

A photo posted by Mount Vernon Mustangs (@mvmustangs) on


Your turn. Any thoughts to share?