Table Top Inventing Podcast

Show Notes | YouTube | iTunes

In This Episode

  • What is possible if you shut off the television?

  • Can you really do anything you want, if you set your mind to it?

  • How hard is it to learn to fly over 80 kinds of planes?

Scott Glaser - Table Top Inventing Podcast

Join us today as we rocket into a conversation about goals, dreams, and the grit to achieve them.

I love today's interview. I admit to having favorite episodes. This is one of them, but maybe not for the reasons you might think.

Today's guest is an engineer who loves to fly planes. He has degrees in aerospace engineering, but his true passion is being in the seat holding the stick or the wheel.

Scott Glaser is a one-of-a-kind individual. He wasn't able to go directly into military aviation but never gave up on the idea of flying military jets. Years later, he is now certified to fly many different kinds of planes including military aircraft. How did he manage to get to where he really wanted to be in the first place?

You'll have to listen in to hear the story, but I'll give you a hint: he learned to fail well.

I love Scott's story. I especially enjoyed the part where he said that it is important to Fail a LOT! You don't hear that very often trumpeted from the from of the room, but every innovator knows how important it is to be resilient. Scott specifically mentioned learning to "dust yourself off".

I have been interviewing many professionals and innovators for our podcast, and they are all giving this message, "Learn to fail well." Learning how to succeed is what we normally hear about, but learning to fail well is much harder yet infinitely more valuable to the innovator. I have heard it said, "If you aren't prepared to fail, you aren't prepared to innovate."

If you want your teenager to learn to fail well, go to and find out how you can get them involved in our programs. Failing well is in our DNA, and success is the natural outcome.

Original Episode Date: March 25, 2016

Category: Business Professionals

Direct download: 082_-_Getting_What_You_Want_with_Scott_Glaser.mp3
Category:Business Professionals -- posted at: 11:22pm PST

Show Notes | YouTube | iTunes

Ben Owens - Table Top Inventing PodcastIn This Episode

  • Are there important innovators and inventors in public schools?
  • Can being an engineer prepare you for the classroom?
  • How can a public school bring project-based learning into every class?

Join us as we speak with a true educational inventor from the mountains of western North Carolina.

Welcome to the Table Top Inventing podcast where we bring fresh perspectives at the intersection of innovation, education, and parenting.

You have probably heard of 3D printing by now and possibly even the term "maker education", and if you are a teacher, you have certainly heard the term "project-based learning". For those not familiar with the term, imagine going to school, but instead of sitting at desks in rows doing worksheets, you spend the day building catapults, writing new computer games, or growing a garden.

Project-based learning is like a rich canvas on which to hang all of those seemingly disconnected facts such as torque and momentum or cell division. However in school, educators often worry about meeting standards such as Common Core or in getting students ready to pass their yearly competency tests.

Yet the very best educators out there know that something is amiss with a system when we begin "teaching to the test" rather than helping students learn how to learn. Ben Owens is just such an educator, but he isn't teaching at a private school. He isn't talking about projects in a homeschool environment.

080 - Ben Owens 05Ben is a high school teacher in the public school system at a very special high school in western North Carolina, Tri-County Early College. Their whole school has switched to a project-based learning model for the high school years in conjunction with taking classes at the collocated community college.

You have to hear Ben's story.

I am so exited about Ben's experience and the commitment of Tri-County Early College to bring project-based learning to rural Appalachia. If you are a teacher or a parent, I want you to know that project-based learning is NOT a pipe-dream. It is a very real, very effective model for your school and for your kids.

If you live near Murphy, near Atlanta GA or Orlando FL, or in southern California, go to and signup for Inventor Camp this summer for a taste of project-based learning. It is a transformational experience where learning is both challenging AND fun.

PBL prepares kids for life in ways that worksheets and lined paper can never prepare them. Join the revolution.

Original Episode Date: 3/18/16

Category: Technology Educators

Direct download: 081_-_Project-Based_Learning_with_Ben_Owens.mp3
Category:Technology Educators -- posted at: 10:54pm PST

Show Notes | YouTube | iTunes

In This Episode

  • When is the best time to introduce technology to your kids?
  • Is there and advantage to introducing technical problem-solving early?
  • How do we introduce coding in kindergarten?

Today's guest will fascinate you with the answers.

I'm sure that at some point in our lives we have heard the words, "You're just a girl." Those four and a half words can be very dangerous. One of my favorite Youtube videos is the "Like a girl" video. Powerful girls have always known they can do anything, but where did that power come from?

We are going to dive in head first to the topic of girls in technology, and I couldn't have picked a better guest. Kiki Prottsman is a pro in every sense of the word. People call her a "Technological force of nature" that doesn't sound like "just a girl" to me.

Let today's interview sink down and resonate where it can make a difference in the world around you.

I could try to fill the last few seconds of the podcast with how awesome Kiki was, but you'll know when you hear her. Look at Kiki's show notes page and look up, her Youtube channel "KIKIvsIT", her website, and the other things we put there. For more on girls in technical fields listen to our interview on the Table Top Inventing podcast with Julia Fallon.

Make a difference. Don't just tell the girls in your life they are awesome. Give them opportunities to prove it.

Original Episode Date: March 11, 2016

Category: Innovative Educators

Direct download: 080_-_Powerful_Girls_with_Kiki_Prottsman.mp3
Category:Technology Educators -- posted at: 9:48pm PST

Show Notes | YouTube | iTunes

Jason DiVenere - Table Top Inventing Podcast

In This Episode

  • What is the best way to get a flight into space if you are not currently an astronaut?
  • How serious is space tourism?
  • How can we feed that inner drive to explore?

Today's episode is about exploration which reminds me of a quote by T.S. Elliot.

We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.

That's a great commentary on getting perspective, but Elliot is not suggesting we can get perspective without exploration. Instead, he is saying to get your rear end up off the couch and go see some new scenery!

You better strap yourself in with a 5-point harness for today's episode! We are blasting off with Jason DiVenere. Jason loves to explore. For fun, he might hop on a plane to Sydney, Australia, for lunch or an afternoon at the Sydney Opera House. During college, he spent time driving around the Mojave desert in southern California for the DARPA Grand Challenge team at his university.

Somewhere along the way, Jason became enamored with space travel. So in addition to exploring the desert in southern California or flying all over the world, his ultimate goal is to travel in space.

This goal drove him to some interesting lengths, but you'll have to listen to the rest of the podcast to satisfy your curiosity.

But before we jump in, Jason wanted me to point out that in our interview he is sharing his opinions. We mention Scaled Composites and Virgin Galactic, but he is not speaking in anyway for those companies. He is only sharing his experiences and perspectives.

Jason's story is compelling. He ended up working for the front-runner in space tourism simply because he wanted to go to space and he wouldn't take "no" for an answer! He's got curiosity AND grit--both characteristics that we want to see in every teenager.

If your teenager likes to build things but you're worried that they need more challenge, sign them up for an Inventor Camp near you. Inventor Camp is full of excitement and learning. We use powerful technology, and we don't dumb down the difficulty. Students get immersed in real scenarios, and versatile, real tools such as 3D printers, computer programming, and electronics.

Original Episode Date: 3/4/16

Category: Business Professionals

Direct download: 079_-_Space_Travel_with_Jason_DiVenere.mp3
Category:Business Professionals -- posted at: 7:19am PST