Have you seen this?

On June 18, 2014 the White House hosted it’s first ever Maker Faire. On that day President Obama gave a speech to kick of the Maker Day’s events. President Obama declared June 18, 2014 a National Day of Making. As stated by Obama (2014), “Todays DIY is tomorrows made in America.” In his speech he acknowledged the importance of the “Maker Movement” and its role in future jobs. He discussed the importance of changing the way schools structure teaching and learning for students. Encouraging taking more of a shop class approach of making while learning and acknowledging that students have different learning styles. It’s inspiring to know that even the President acknowledges the importance in the “Maker Movement” and understands that “making” in classrooms can have benefits in helping prepare students for future jobs and industries.


The White House. (2014, June 18). The white house hosts its first-ever maker faire. [Video]. Retrieved June 14, 2014, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7wHorfRvvcE#t=631


#uasrobotics Week 9

What would you need to coordinate a “Maker Day” for your school?

WP_20150715_004WP_20150715_005When I think of a “Maker Day” and how to chapter eleven of Invent To Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom (Martinez & Stager 2013) describes When I think of a “Maker Day” and how to chapter eleven of Invent To Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom (Martinez & Stager 2013) describes a “Maker Day”, I envision it being similar to a children’s science museum.  With exhibits to look at (student’s completed projects), guided activities with all the necessary materials, and a “free” explore WP_20150715_003WP_20150715_001area. According to Martinez & Stager (2013), “You will want one large space as the “midway” and perhaps classrooms for short presentations or more formal demonstrations. Science labs, fab labs, or a stage may also be useful.” At the children’s museum in Fairbanks there are lots of different activities for students to explore, play and tinker. They have a water table, an air tube, and an area stocked with old electronics where students can bang away and take apart. I see my first maker day being more of a school maker night. I envision a maker experience that takes place after school for about 2-3 hours with various fluid stations for participants to complete. An area/room or two devoted to technology, for example Scratch, Code.org, etc. An area/room devoted to “free” making, similar to a “Maker Playground” from chapter eleven, the area would be stocked with various materials where participants could build and create what they want. As stated by Martinez & Stager (2013), “You may also just have a “Maker Playground” area where attendees are free to invent and create with a wide assortment of arts and craft materials, broken toys, LEDs, batteries, hunks of wood, spools, film canisters, hammers, nails, glue guns, glue sticks, colored duct tape, paper/ plastic cups, tiles, boxes, paper bags, pipe cleaners, coat hangers, construction paper, streamers, modeling clay, pipe cleaners, little plastic creatures, stickers, paint, etc.”  Lastly there would be an area/room devoted to showcasing students’ completed projects

If I were to host a maker day at my school things I would need would be:

  • Support from my Principal. I would be using the school, so I would need to get approval from the Principal. I would also need the Principals support to find volunteers to help organize and run the event and supplies for the maker day activities.
  • A large space i.e. the Gym or the many classrooms in the school.
  • Determine whether I needed funding for materials/supplies. I would definitely want technology. I would need to figure out whether my district already has the necessary technology or if I could purchase it. For example Spheros, Little Bits, Arduino, etc. I also would want to make sure I had enough supplies for maker day attendees to build.
  • Stations – I envision a space with a variety of fluid stations where volunteers are showing attendees how to create something. Then giving the attendees time to create and build and when attendees are ready to move on to the next station they can. As stated by Martinez & Stager (2013), “Show people how to do something and then let them do it. This isn’t a real estate seminar or boring school class. Let attendees create lots of memories throughout the day by having as many experiences as possible.”
  • Food- I would want to supply a snack or have a snack station where participants could make a snack.
  • Educational materials – I would supply a flyer or brochure to inform participants about the history of and the importance of makerspaces and the maker movement.
  • Advertisement- I would need to create flyers to send home with students to inform families about the maker night.


Martinez, S., & Stager, G. (2013). Invent to learn: Making, tinkering, and engineering in the classroom. Constructing Modern Knowledge Press.

Week 8 Reflection

I was unable to attend the Google hangout maker time this week, but I did watch what Lee had recorded. It was interesting seeing what Lee was making with the circuit tape. I also noticed on Twitter that Cindy had created a bulletin board with circuit tape, which I think is a great idea! While researching circuit tape I came across a YouTube video explain the best ways to manipulate the tape. At the end of the video there are ideas on how to use the tape. I am interested in using the tape to decorate the windows in my classroom (3:43 in the video).

This week I think I read all of my peer’s blogs; they were all so interesting to read. We all agreed that educators can teach more than they know. I also think I commented on everyone’s blogs, because I was able to make a connection, add a resource or my two cents to what my peers were writing about. Megan brought up a good point in her blog that the educational system needs to catch up with technology. Her statement had me wondering…why is education so behind the times? educators should be the pioneers. Tech companies should be asking schools and universities to pilot their technology.

Things are coming along with the Arduino; I think I am finally getting the hang of it. However, I still rely heavily on the Arduino software for the codes. I am fine when it comes to coding like Scratch Jr. or Tickle, but Arduino’s code looks like Latin to me. My background knowledge of code is so limited that I struggle to understand it. In the maker hangout I noticed Scott was on project 13. While he was building he was commenting on some of the difficulties of the project. In my head I was secretly hoping he would make a video for it. Well low and behold when I checked the Robotics Google Community he had created a video. His videos are so helpful to watch before I actually do projects. I definitely plan on watching Scott’s project 13 video before I attempt to complete it on my own.

#uasrobotics Week 8

Can you teach more than you know?

Last year teaching 3rd grade I had a technology teacher come into my classroom and help my students set up their Google drive accounts. The teacher also showed my class how to create and share a folder. As the tech teacher left the room my students were so excited to use Google drive. I thought to myself…I will have to take some time this week to research how my students could use Google drive in the classroom. A few days later one of my students came up to me and asked if he could show me the Google slideshow he had created. My student had created a Google slides project about his summer salmon fishing trip. I was amazed! After my student showed me his slideshow I was convinced I needed to have the rest of the class create slideshows. That student became the teacher for our class. If students had a question, he would assist the class, it was great! As the rest of the class created their projects they naturally helped each other. As a teacher it was a heart-warming experience. As stated by Hlubinka, M., et al. (2013), “Delegate some of your responsibilities to advanced students and adult volunteers (p.18).” As teachers we don’t have time to explore and learn everything about every thing. Allowing or students to share in learning opens up the world of learning for everyone, teachers and students. In the online article, Three Trends that Define the Future of Teaching and Learning, Tina Barseghian writes about the changing trends in education and what it means for students, educators, and schools. According to Barseghian (2011), Teachers’ and students’ relationships are changing, as they learn from each other. Teachers’ roles are shifting from owners of information to facilitators and guides to learning.”

Creating a classroom makerspace is an opportunity to give students ownership of their own learning as they explore their own passions.

Martinez & Stager (2013)

Invent to Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom

School makerspaces encourage students to become teachers and share their knowledge with others. In chapter 5 of the Makerspace Playbook the authors share ways that the teacher’s role can shift becoming a coach, researcher, or project manager and the students’ role becomes that of a mentor in the classroom. As stated by Hlubinka, M., et al. (2013), “Nobody who uses the space needs to be an expert, not even the teacher. The most important thing is to have a passion for and a curiosity about making in many different forms (p.17).” So to answer this week’s essential question I would say, “yes”. Students can and should be encouraged learn more than what a their teacher knows.


Barseghian, T. (2011, February 5). Three trends that define the future of teaching and learning. Retrieved July 7, 2015, from http://ww2.kqed.org/mindshift/2011/02/05/three-trends-that-define-the-future-of-teaching-and-learning/

Explee TM. (2014, July 13). What is a makerspace? [Video]. Retrieved July, 7 2015, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NLEJLOB6fDw

Hlubinka, M., Dougherty, D., Thomas, P., Chang, S., Hoefer, S., Alexander, I., & McGuire, D. (2013). Makerspace playbook: school edition. Retrieved July 7, 2015, from http://makered.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Makerspace-Playbook-Feb-2013.pdf

Martinez, S., & Stager, G. (2013). Invent to learn: Making, tinkering, and engineering in the classroom. Constructing Modern Knowledge Press.

Week 7 Reflection

I have got makerspace on the brain. Every container or box that I get rid of I think…my students could use this in our class makerspace. I don’t have space in my house to keep every container, but when school starts I might bring in my recyclables. I have been trying to figure out how to create a makerspace in my daughter Bailey’s bedroom; she is a maker. The other day I had an empty egg carton that I was about to throw away and then I thought…I should see if Bailey wants this. When I showed it to Bailey and asked her if she wanted it, her eyes lit up and she smiled “Yes!”

This week I spent time reflecting on the types of rule/guidelines for my class makerspace. Like last week, this week I learned a lot from my UAS colleagues. Many rules that I had not thought of they did. I spent time reading my colleagues blogs and finding what I could borrow from them to make my rules. Many of my colleagues categorized their rules i.e. clean up, tools, safety. Cherie created a safety rules and guidelines document. I like her document, so I made a similar one that I posted on my makerspace website.

This week I took some time to work on my makerspace website (http://clubmakerspace.weebly.com/).  Cindy’s website gave me some good ideas in what I should have on my website.  I also found a few other websites that gave me some good ideas on what to add to a makerspace website. One website I found had a “donate” tab. I thought that was a great idea, so I added one to my website. I have a Google Docs list of materials my makerspace needs and I have a form that people can fill out, to email me, if they want to donate supplies.

#uasrobotics Week 7 Rules:

What are the rules for your makerspace?

Chapter nine of Invent To Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom (Martinez & Stager 2013) raised many good issues about makerspace rules and had good suggestions on how to determine rules for a makerspace. As stated by Martinez & Stager (2013), “Once you have decided what kinds of equipment you will begin with, find ways for students to access that equipment that balances safety and security with creativity and a sense of ownership.” My idea of starting a makerspace would involve introducing what a makerspace is, as I would introduce any activity. I would also approach the rules and responsibilities the same way I would for setting up class rules or my expectations for center activities. I would probably do some sort of KWL activity to find out the students’ background knowledge of makerspaces. I would create an anchor chart, as a class, of what it would look like while participating in the makerspace. What the teacher would be doing and what students would be doing, much like the daily five anchor charts for reading centers. Then we would talk at length about the makerspace tools/materials and how to use them, again I would find out what they already know about tools, if they have seen them used by parent, grandparents, etc. If there were issues with students not being safe while using tools, we would stop and meet as a class to discuss how to ensure safety in our makerspace. According to Hlubinka (2013), “Makerspace users of all ages need to be trained in safely operating tools before using them. And they also need reminders.”

So what would my makerspace rules be?…I would want student input (with my guidance) in the makerspace rules, so students feel like they have ownership in the space. I would want rules about safety, cleaning up, and sharing. Frank Antonides School in New Jersey has a Powtoon video of their makerspace rules (http://www.wlbschools.com/Page/1594). Their rules are:

  • Supplies are shared
  • Follow safety rules
  • We don’t waste supplies
  • You must clean up after yourself
  • Be creative and have fun

I think these rules are straight forward, but require discussion on what each rule would look like in the makerspace. I like the “we don’t waste supplies” rule. That rule goes along with the makerspace philosophy that anything and everything can be used to make something. In the article Safety in School Makerspaces I like the one page document Common Safety Rules. The rules that I would like to use in my space were:

  • Post emergency number 911
  • Safety is our top. If you are not sure what you are doing, ask.
  • Never use a broken tool
  • Do not remove tools from room

I’m sure my students will come up with some great rules/expectations for our makerspace, they usually do when it comes to class rules. After some time of working in our makerspace, as a class, we would re-examine our rules and see if we need to add or change any rules.


Common safety rules. Retrieved June 30, 2015, from http://cdn.makezine.com/uploads/2013/08/commonsafetyrules.pdf

Hlubinka, M. (2013, August 21). Safety in school makerspaces. Retrieved June 30, 2015, from http://makezine.com/2013/09/02/safety-in-school-makerspaces/

Maker Club / Maker Club Rules. Retrieved June 30, 2015, from http://www.wlbschools.com/page/1594

Martinez, S., & Stager, G. (2013). Invent to learn: Making, tinkering, and engineering in the classroom. Constructing Modern Knowledge Press.

Week 6 Reflection

This week’s question was hard for me to conceptualize, however I learned a lot in reading my peer’s blogs/ideas. I am not familiar with many tools, so thinking of things to stock in my makerspace was difficult. I learned a lot from reading Scott’s blog. I gained insight into tools I should stock. I also learned a lot from reading Cindy’s blog. Her documents were well organized and easy to read. I am hoping I can write up my documents that well in the near future. Cindy is also sharing some cool tech gadgets, like squishy circuits and LED throwies. She also shared information on the cool maker things happening in her district and the resources she can collaborate with, it was aspiring to read. I really gained ideas from all the blogs this week. I have been jotting down materials or ideas that I think I can use in my makerspace. This week most of my replies to my peers were to ask question or get more knowledge for my makerspace. For example I asked Scott about his green screen wall.

In doing some research for my club planning documents I found some useful resources. An elementary school in Missouri, Lewis and Clark Elementary has a library makerspace. They have a website that is full of great makerspace websites and resources. Their website can be found here: http://lc-lps-ca.schoolloop.com/MakerSpace.  The Lewis and Clark librarian also has a blog, Lewis and Clark Learns, where the librarian shares what is going on in their makerspace. http://lewisandclarkreads.blogspot.com/search/label/Genius%20Hour

Here is a video that shares their students’ projects:

I have some great ideas and have learned many things this week, now it’s just a matter of getting it all down into documents for my maker club.


Lewis and Clark Elementary: MakerSpace. Retrieved June 29, 2015, from http://lc-lps-ca.schoolloop.com/makerspace

Rosheim, A. (2015, March 31). Genius hour 2015. [Video]. Retrieved June 26, 2015, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pOSvpd8rByo

Rosheim, A. (2015). Lewis and clark learns. [Blog]. Retrieved June 26, 2015 from, http://lewisandclarkreads.blogspot.com/search/label/Genius%20Hour