Student Led EdCamp and Maker Spaces

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Student Led EdCamp and Maker Spaces

Avanti High School Hosted their Annual Student Led EdCamp on December 17th and December 18th.

Student Led Ed Camp Debrief

What is it?

participant-driven conference allowed students to have authentic conversations regarding "student voice" in schools.  Normally, EdCamps are for educators, but we hosted one for and ran this one specifically by/for students. This was an exciting opportunity for students to engage in meaningful dialogue from multiple perspectives. 

In was an "un-conference", where students arrived to an introduction to the EdCamp. Then students proposed topics for conversations, which included:

"Student Voice", "Alternative School Choices", "Oppression of Students of Color", "Gun Violence and Safety in Schools", "Art and Music Funding and Importance", "LGBTQ+ Rights and Treatment in School", "Field Trips", "Healthy Food Options in School", "Dress Code" and "Mental Health".

These topics were then put into a schedule of seminar topics, and students were able to engage in break-out sessions to discuss these chosen topics.

Student EdCamp Discussion

Why EdCamp?

Last year, students left the EdCamp feeling excited about their conversations and empowered to make positive change in their community.  Teachers were equally impressed at the maturity and integrity of these young people during their hour-long conversations with no adult mediator or leader.  In their seminars, students had a chance to really open up to one another, to find similarities across differences, and express their unique voice. The sense of accomplishment was palpable during our debrief of the day. This all came true again this past December in our second annual Student Led EdCamp.

Student Led EdCamp Tee Shirts

Who Came?

Avanti students participated on Monday December 17th. We practice and prepared for Nova Middle school to join us on December 18th.  On December 18th we had two groups of Nova Middle School Students join us.

Maker Space Students Making Bath Salts

Monday December 17th

Monday was a pre-EdCamp day where students help to set-up for Tuesday as well as engaged in a mini-EdCamp to get a sense for what the next day would look like.  Avanti students were asked to be ambassadors and leaders for our guest students for the actual EdCamp. Monday was also a day where we were able to get deeper into the rules surrounding EdCamp so that Avanti students could be leaders in honoring those rules on Tuesday.  Students could also register for either the AM or PM session (or both) for the mini-EdCamp on Monday.

Set-up for the EdCamp

Tuesday Dec. 18th

Students from Nova Middle School joined us for our Student L-EdCamp.  They came for both the AM and PM session. There were snacks in the morning and at lunch available and donated by Ralph's Thiftway and the Avanti Principal Fund.  We had a short introduction, two 45-minute discussion sessions, and a raffle/reflection before departure.  Students could sign up for both the AM and PM sessions. Students chose to attend a Makers Space option for one of the two 45-min. sessions.

Group Discussion at EdCamp

Maker Spaces


Maker Spaces are usually studios with varied kinds of materials for … making things!  They can be more engineering-focused, art-focused, or both! Last year, we had a Circuit-Building Maker Space available for students at the EdCamp for one of their sessions. This year we had Chap Stick and Bath Bomb Making, Avanti Inukshuk Pendant Making, Team Challenge Course and Zine Making available for students. There were instructions that could be followed, but Maker Spaces are also places to try out new ideas and to be innovative with materials at hand. Students attending the EdCamp were able to go to a Maker Space for one of their sessions. 

Zine Making in Art Room