Tinkering: Addressing the Adults

A Theoretical and Methodological Framework

Over the last decade, Tinkering has gained international recognition as a powerful, motivational and engaging approach for developing STEM learning and building 21stCentury Skills. Highly personalised,
learner-centred and freed from the constraints of formal scientific language, Tinkering is increasingly being adopted by a wide-range of informal STEM learning organisations to help engage diverse audiences across a range of education settings – both formal and informal.

This document details the methodological framework for the project and comprises a critical review of the
relationship between Tinkering, adult engagement with STEM, development of 21st Century skills, lifelong learning and social inclusion. By exploring the relationship between these areas, this document outlines:

1. how and why Tinkering can be used as an inclusive teaching approach for Adult Learning and Education
(ALE) in an informal learning setting;
2. the ways in which the project will help to develop sector knowledge around inclusive practice for working with vulnerable, underserved, disadvantaged or marginalised adults with relatively low participation rates in ALE and STEM learning.

This publication is a product of “Tinkering EU: Adressing the Adults. (2019-1-NL01-KA204-060251),
funded with support from the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union. This publication reflects
the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use that may
be made of the information contained therein.

Authors: Emily Harris, Mark Winterbottom, Inka de Pijper, Vanessa Mignan & Maria Xanthoudaki.

Project Coordinator: NEMO Science Museum, The Netherlands

Partners: Copernicus (Poland), Fondazione Museo Nazionale della Scienza e della Tecnologia Leonardo da Vinci (Italy), ScienceCenter-Netzwerk (Austria), University of Cambridge (United Kingdom) & Traces (Paris).

Photographer: DigiDaan

Image credits

Header image: Tinkering NEMO Science Museum banner

Icon image: Tinkering addressing the adults - NEMO Science Museum