Get the school year off to a great start with these ideas for incorporating maker activities into back-to-school events (and get even more ideas for keeping the momentum going throughout the year).
Makerspace Activities and Programming
Two years ago, educators at Mineral Point Middle and High Schools found it difficult to plan maker activities and find the supplies and tools required. After they got the TeacherGeek Maker Cart, their problems were solved and hands-on, project-based learning reached new heights throughout the school.
Looking for fun ways to boost literacy learning? Look no further than your makerspace! Dr. Jacie Maslyk shares strategies for integrating maker learning with literacy and helping students demonstrate their understanding in language arts through something they design, make, or engineer.
Children’s literature provides the perfect springboard into maker projects, which can help extend learning and boost student engagement. Dr. Jacie Maslyk gives you starter ideas to help you connect making activities with literature.
The enrollment of English language learners is rapidly growing, and it’s important to explore strategies that will support the development of both their language and social skills. Maker learning is one pathway you should consider to achieve this, says Dr. Jacie Maslyk.
Formal school assessments drive everything from funding to curriculum decisions, but should they have a place in your makerspace? Learn why maker educator Heather Lister thinks evaluating maker projects can provide valuable information to both educators and students and gain resources for creating your own rubrics.
Free Download: How to Start a Makerspace Guide Stop thinking about creating a makerspace and start implementing one! Download Demco’s How to Start a Makerspace Guide to jump-start your makerspace journey. You’ll find tips and advice from experts on the following topics: Planning your space Securing funding Getting buy-in from students and staff Low-tech makerspace ideas High-tech…
Free Download: Guide to Low-Tech Making Your makerspace doesn’t need to have the latest high-tech tools to be effective. Download this guide for low-tech making tips and easy and effective activities that can help you launch a maker program that boosts critical thinking, creativity, communication, and collaboration. You’ll find activities for the following: Cardboard and recyclables…
School makerspaces can play a pivotal role in helping students cope with grief and loss. Get makerspace programming ideas and tips on how to facilitate compassionate making projects.
When Cabot School District in Arkansas decided to focus on STEM learning in their makerspaces, they wanted a solution that would not only provide engaging, student-driven learning opportunities, but that would also make it easy for educators to get started. Discover how the Demco Maker Collection is getting kids and educators alike excited about STEM learning.
Having a school makerspace allows teachers to increase learning opportunities for students and build connections across grade levels and content areas. Read examples of making throughout the curriculum and gain ideas for your own classroom.
Find out about the learning that took place when one administrator introduced her elementary schools to the Demco Maker Collection with Challenge Guide.
Looking for ways to ramp up the STEM learning in your library or classroom? Take a closer look at K’NEX. K’NEX are a popular and versatile building tool for all age groups, and they allow students to quickly design, prototype and iterate. Get students’ gears turning with three quick K’NEX challenges from Diana Rendina.
The real-world design challenge Diana Rendina gave her students resulted in a maker cart that is now manufactured by Custom Educational Furnishings (CEF) and offered through Demco. Read on to learn how you can offer your students authentic design challenges in your makerspace.
Learn how you can promote creativity, teamwork and experimentation by creating a STEM club for middle-schoolers. Amanda Bressler helps you face down your fear of not being the expert, walks you through program setup and gives you a simple challenge to get kids started.
Holding a Maker Fest in your school or library is a great way to showcase all the wonderful learning taking place in your makerspace. Diana Rendina walks you through the details, gives you ideas for stations, and helps you make sure your own Maker Fest will be successful.
Ready to get kids excited about coding? Library Journal Maker Hero Alisha Wilson shares how she draws a crowd with her Coding for a Cookie event with three key steps. You’ll gain a host of coding resources, learn about setting up stations, and get tips on advertising your event.
After using their geometry skills to create string art, Winnetka fourth-graders supersized their projects using the hands-on makerspace tool Rigamajig. Learn how they created a giant-sized protractor and took their string art experience outdoors to apply engineering, math and art concepts.
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) affects one in 68 children. You can use your makerspace not only to bring awareness to ASD, but also to engage children of all abilities. To celebrate Autism Awareness Month in April, Gina Seymour provides you with five maker activities and tips on how to offer programming that’s both inclusive and fun year-round.
What happens when you create an Innovation Lab at your library where people can explore, learn new technology and share their knowledge? Everybody wants in! Learn how Chad Mairn from the Seminole Community Library designed a Maker Boot Camp just for kids to connect them to coding, robotics, circuitry and more.
In this first installment of the Demco Master Maker blog series, expert Nicholas Provenzano, aka The Nerdy Teacher, shares his background, talks about the importance of makerspaces in schools, gives a preview of the topics he’ll be addressing in future posts, and invites you to join the conversation during the monthly #DemcoMakerChat on Thursday nights.
Libraries are safe spaces, known for finding ways to welcome everyone, and makerspaces within libraries should be no different. Award-winning library media specialist Gina Seymour provides tips and resources for how to welcome and accommodate all users in your makerspace.
Need to add a little art to your STEAM makerspace? Looking for a way to motivate summer reading program participants? Love collaborative art pieces? Read what librarians shared about how they are using StickTogether mosaic posters for all this and more and steal some ideas for your own library!
According to teacher-librarian Angela Rosheim, “Just having students make will not automatically create deep learning — you need to have sound pedagogy to go along with it.” In this blog Angela shares how she integrates making into her curriculum, along with a fun lesson plan that combines research with design thinking.
Adding a STEAM component to a literacy assignment can encourage students to think more deeply about what they are reading and writing. Library Journal’s Maker Hero School Librarian of the Year Alisha Wilson shares three ways you can collaborate with classroom teachers to integrate robotics, circuitry and coding into English class.
Diana Rendina details 3 engaging makerspace projects that fit right in with the 2017 Teen Read Week (Oct. 8–14) theme: “Unleash Your Story.” Students will be eager to tell their stories with these creative activities that combine literacy and making.
Looking for the next new tech tool to add to your makerspace? See how School Librarian of the Year Todd Burleson is using drones to engage students and teach coding in his classroom.
Looking for ways to take STEM programming to the next level? Check out MeeperBOTS! These mobile-app-controlled motorized BOTS bring LEGOs® to life. Plus get a tried-and-true program that’s sure to capture kids’ interest.
Looking for ways to use the littleBits Synth Kit? Director Mary Glendening shows you how to emulate one of the most popular littleBits programs held at CreateSpace@MFL, located in the Middletown Free Library. Learn the step-by-step directions for running the program at your own library and encouraging kids and teens to invent music with littleBits.
Quicksand, black holes and tsunamis — oh my! Combine attention-grabbing topics with engaging STEM activities and books, and draw in even the most reluctant readers.
The Maker Movement has hit the library! Watch this webinar and learn how to ensure patrons can pursue open-ended maker projects and enjoy playing to learn.
Library Journal Mover and Shaker Colleen Graves discusses design thinking and making and provides project ideas to get started tinkering with littleBits™ in your library and creating a community of makers!
Even the most reluctant readers are drawn in by the excitement of extreme sports! Discover STEM project ideas that will kick-start kids’ enthusiasm and test their engineering skills.
Have you been wanting to add a STEAM program to your library’s list of events but think it might be too expensive or too difficult to plan? Think again! In this blog post, Terry Ehle shares the inspiration you need to get started.