This week was exhausting. The district I am working with just had their major summer conference, and I ended up doing my Maker Space Presentation 24 times in 6 days. I could almost do it in my sleep. The one thing I took from the week though was the lack of knowledge about this topic that is so important. Every school should have some sort of "Maker Space:", and hopefully this blog will tell you why.
Well, the first thing is "What are Maker Spaces?" Maker Spaces are specialized places where kids can create and make. The concepts plain and simple, but it can mean so many different things in different schools and different grade levels. Anything that lets kids create can be maker. You could do it with simple things like household supplies, legos, and play-doh. You can also do complex electronics like 3-D printers, open source electronics, and robotics.
Kids need to be active. They need to be hands on. They need to learn skills for the future, and they need to be able to create. This can all happen with the maker movement. It starts with creation. Allowing kids to create is personalized learning. It teaches deeper skills, and they also learn higher order thinking skills like problem solving. Maker Spaces are also the easiest way to build skills for the future. In reality, most jobs look for critical thinking skills over everything else. They can teach the rest. On top of that, you can use the maker space to teach engineering and computer science skills which in the future is going to be part of most jobs.
For me, the most important part of the "Maker Space" is letting kids be active and hands on. I needed this almost more than anything when I was in school. I was the type of kid who was bored to tears in school. Almost every class was the sage on the stage teacher in the front. I needed something hands on. I also have a love for technology so this would have been great for me. I even wonder if my career would have been different had I had some of these opportunities. I could have easily been in computer science.
Please realize the importance of letting our kids create and make. The maker movement lets you fulfill the needs of the kids like me. If you are interested, I also have a maker space presentation which you can access by clicking this link. So get started! Let kids Make!