Cardboard Challenge Tips Part 2: More Tips and Tricks

Cardboard Challenge Part 2 Tips and Tricks: Here's more tips to help support your cardboard challenge, including storage, organization, and using design challenges.

Cardboard challenges have been a core part of my makerspace programming for the past eight years.  I continue to be amazed year after year at the amazing ideas students come up with when given a design challenge and simple, everyday materials.  In Part 1 of this post series, I looked at some of my favorite … Read more

Cardboard Challenge Tips Part 1: The Tools

Cardboard Challenge Tips Part 1: The Tools // Here are some of my favorite makerspace tools to support a cardboard challenge.

The Cardboard Challenge remains one of my all-time favorite makerspace activities.  I love how accessible it is to students.  How enthusiastic and creative they can be with such simple materials.  I’ll never forget one of my favorite makerspace moments – my students at Stewart were Skyping with another school that was looking to start a … Read more

COVID Library Update Part 3: Our Makerspace in the Time of COVID

COVID Library Update Part 3: Our Makerspace in the time of COVID - How we continued to host afterschool Maker Days while keeping students safe.

This is a multiple post series.  Part 1 gave an overview of what my school has been doing during COVID and how my library’s physical space has adapted.  In Part 2, I shared about programs I’ve done to encourage reading, plus collaborations with teachers.  For this last post, I’ll share how we’ve adapted our makerspace … Read more

Read This Book: Educated By Design

Educated By Design

If you’re interested in the ways that education and design intersect, this book is for you.  If you’re interested in empathy, design thinking, hands-on creative learning, getting comfortable with failure, you’re in luck.  And if you love super-awesome illustrations created by the author spread throughout your books, this one’s got you covered.  Educated By Design: … Read more

Demco Post: How to Manage Your Makerspace During a Pandemic

Demco Post: How to Manage a Makerspace During a Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has closed down many schools.  Some are fully in virtual learning mode.  Others have a hybrid approach of in-person and online learning (as my school does).  And others have gone 100% back to in-person, but are still following guidelines for safe social distancing and cleaning. It’s a pretty crazy time right now.  … Read more

Open Exploration in a Makerspace: Best Practices

Open Exploration in a Makerspace: Best Practices // Open exploration time allows students to pursue projects and ideas that interest them. Here's some best practices.

In Open Exploration in a Makerspace: What it is and Why We Need it, I explored why having open exploration time in your makerspace in an important part of the learning ecosystem.  In this post, I dig more into the practical stuff – how to actually make this work in your space. Open Exploration in … Read more

Open Exploration in a Makerspace: What it is and Why We Need It

Open Exploration in a Makerspace: What it is and Why We Need It // Students benefit when they have the opportunity for both structured and unstructured time in makerspace. Here's a look at what open exploration is and why it's important.

Open Exploration in a Makerspace: What it is and Why We Need It In a thriving makerspace, there is a balance.  Design challenges allow students to work together on a similar theme coming from a design prompt.  The challenge creates constraints, but not necessarily structure. Workshops are focused more on learning a specific skill.  Usually … Read more

5 Ways to Get Your Makerspace Ready for a New Year

5 Ways to Get Your Makerspace Ready : A new school year means new opportunities to get your makerspace ready for students. Here's some tips and tricks for sprucing things up and starting the year off strong.

It’s that time of year again – the first days of the school year will soon be upon us (and for some of you, it may already be here).  Getting ready for the year means pre-planning meetings, making photocopies, arranging class schedules and all the other good stuff that comes in August and September every … Read more