How can play therapy help elementary students cope with the trauma caused by the pandemic?

This was the BIG question facing Emily Burk’s (MakerSpace and Technology Integration Specialist) high school students in Anna, Texas.

Their task- design play therapy toys for their younger peers to use in the newly constructed social + emotional well-being rooms.

This was real PBL. There were real users. And the stakes were high.

In this short podcast episode, Emily unpacks this dynamic PBL experience, and how she used the design process to transform students from apathetic teenagers, into empathetic and engaged toy designers. We learn how to:

❤️  Use a simple 5- step design process to guide our projects
❤️  Make our socially distanced environments more ‘hands-on’
❤️  Connect our projects to real users and real audiences
❤️  Improve social and emotional well-being through hands-on PBL

Connect with Emily: Twitter (@tech_edu_burk), Instagram (@annaisd_makerspace)

Emily’s Bio:

Emily Burk is a Maker Integration Technology Specialist in a 3,744 square foot public high school makerspace in the North Texas area. Emily has had 22 years of experience in the classroom varying from fine arts, English-Language Arts, career and technical education, and media and technology integration. She has a passion for project-based learning, making learning applicable and relevant to all learners, and providing all students equitable access to maker education.