When I talk to other librarians and educators about starting a school Makerspace, one of the most common things I hear is: “I’d love to do (insert cool Maker activity) at my school, but we don’t have a budget for that”. What many people don’t realize is that the idea that you need a lot of money to start a Makerspace is a myth. All you need is to have vision, ingenuity, and resourcefulness. A lack of funds is no longer an excuse for keeping your students from experiencing the empowerment of bringing the Maker Education Movement into your program.
Makerspaces on a Budget
This quote is from the introduction to my article in The Scanner, the ISTE Librarian’s Network Newsletter (Volume 6, Number 1). In this article, I go over some of my best advice on ways to kickstart a Makerspace without spending a ton of money. These are just a sampling of ways that you can get started without spending a ton of money.
In the article, I talk about how to…
- Cultivate a Makerspace Vision
- Host a supply drive
- Get help from local businesses
- Utilize DonorsChoose and
- Apply for Grants
Check out the The Scanner to read the rest. Also, check out the ISTE Librarian’s Network page for links to previous newsletters.
Edited to add: Months after writing this original article, I revisited this topic again in my AASL Knowledge Quest post, How To Start a Makerspace When You’re Broke. Go check it out for even more tips and advice.
5 thoughts on “5 Tips for Starting a Makerspace on a Budget”
I agree and that is how we got the one we have today. We repainted and started collecting all kinds of cardboard, pipe cleaners, duct tape, feathers, bottle caps, sewing supplies, cans, discarded furniture and legos. We bought some peg boards, painted table tops with white board marker and asked for donations of any kind. We started with a rolling cart….and a dream…just do it!
What are those snappy things called in the picture?
Those are K’nex.
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