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What is the Fab Lab?

Steam, more specifically, Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math, is getting a makeover in the Blind Brook School District; this new approach is called DICE, which stands for Design, Innovation, Creation, and Expression. The DICE facilitator, Stephanie Peborde Burke, explained that “DICE is supposed to be an idea and a mindset that applies to all content areas”. This exciting initiative will mainly take place in the newly constructed Fab Lab – short for Fabrication Lab. The lab has 3d printers and CNC, or Computer Numerical Control machines. You can produce a design on the computer and then push it up to the machine that cuts it out. The lab’s SmartBoard will be mobile; therefore, have the ability to be moved to wherever the class sees fit and wherever the need is. Ms. Peborde Burke also shared that the plan is to have ‘Fab Lab carts’ that teachers can sign out to bring DICE to their classrooms. The DICE facilitator will work with teachers to find out what they are doing and give them some ideas about how they can use the space and the equipment, as well as how that may mesh with their lessons and projects. In Mrs. Gasparini’s class, Ms. Peborde Burke helped the class use floor planning software to have the students design a sustainable school. They created a brochure and connected it to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. “With DICE, you are now taking it to the next level and taking STEAM and applying it to everyone who could do design”.

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