In response to the introduction of the new 2019 curriculum guidelines into science and technology, Hsinchu County Magistrate Yang Wen-Ke has been striving to promote science and technology education since taking office, and is committed to building a Cultural, Science and Technology, and Smart City. The three Maker & Techs in the county, namely Liou-Jia Senior High School (Affiliated Junior High School), Po-Ai Junior High School and Fong Gang Junior High School are integrated to maximize the benefits of their curriculum content, teacher preparation, exchange platforms and equipment. County Magistrate Yang has also instructed the Department of Education to speed up the establishment of the fourth Maker & Tech in the county (Zhudong Junior High School) to benefit students in areas along Highway 3 and indigenous villages.
Yang Chun Tzu, Director of the Department of Education indicated that between 2018 and 2019, Hsinchu County has successively established three Maker & Techs in Liou-Jia Senior High School, Po-Ai Junior High School and Fong Gang Junior High School. The technology sharing, ideas exchange and dream realization platforms have driven the development of science and technology education in the county's junior high schools and elementary schools. In addition, emerging technologies and the value of hands-on practice have been brought into the curriculum to allow students to learn the soft power of "doing", "using" and "thinking" in daily problem solving, thereby cultivating more creative talents.
Moreover, the Maker & Tech of the Affiliated Junior High School of the Liou-Jia Senior High School launched in April 2018 is the first Maker & Tech in the county. It is also one of National Taiwan Normal University's six innoMaking Space in the nation for teacher training. Many teachers have obtained the Maker Education professional competence certification. They have coached students in national science and technology competitions and achieved excellent performance. The Liou-Jia Senior High School has counseled elementary schools in Guanxi, Qionglin, Baoshan, Beipu and Emei, developed IoT remote-controlled robots, made structural applications in the design and production of earthquake resistant buildings, and used Expiditios to conduct VR field trip in Beipu. The classes offer a rich diversity of courses such as environmental exploration, hand painting, laser-cut box design and creation, miniature desks and chairs construction, personalized laser key rings sculpturing, starfish candle design and fossil currency design. From idea conception, design, drafting to making the finished product, the teachers help students apply science and technology skills into their daily lives through hands-on work so that they can become confident and high quality talents.
The Po-Ai Junior High School Maker & Tech has developed digitally designed Scratch-base computational thinking, bench construction, production, plug-in-free music box, hipster notebooks and Zen scented candle warmers. The Center also teaches courses such as wire-controlled self-propelled cars, Maker robots and IOT application to incorporate the spirit of Maker Education into the curriculum and campus. The Po-Ai Maker & Tech is responsible for planning science and technology education courses for elementary and junior high schools in Zhubei, Zhudong, Hengshan and Jianshi. It also conducts skills enhancement and curriculum development training for science and technology teachers, and promotes science and technology education. The Fong Gang Maker & Tech is responsible for helping elementary and junior high schools in Zhubei, Xinfeng, Hukou and Xinpu. The courses developed by the Center include making handcrafted wooden ballpoint pens, headwind windmills, fishing games, ramp walkers, clock shaped leather key holder, wire-controlled bionic beast, hand launch glider, therapeutic levitating wooden music box, creative wooden clock design and production, and energy and dynamics solar power model car. These courses help students develop computational logic and hands-on problem solving skills, and integrate the value of technology into the curriculum and daily life.
The Department of Education indicated that the county government is also actively seeking from the central government to set up a fourth Maker & Tech in Zhudong Junior High School in the 2020 Academic Year. The government hopes that the Center can drive the development of science and technology education in the Zhudong area and regions along Highway 3 and remote indigenous villages to cultivate diversified and adaptive development in the students. In the future, the Zhudong Maker & Tech will also collaborate with the Normal University and National Tsing Hua University. In addition to core courses such as traditional crafts, electromechanical integration, emerging technologies and cross domain design and production, artificial intelligence and cross domain STEAM concepts will also be incorporated to develop feature courses. Regional training to develop technology seed instructors will also be conducted to assist school teachers develop and learn innovative courses and incorporate science and technology education into student learning. By leading students in the region with technological tools, materials and resources, the teachers can cultivate in students hands-on practice and cross-disciplinary knowledge integration and application.