Rolling Out Project Kits

As described in my previous post on the evolution of the Lodestar Lab Makerspace, we have started the introduction of project kits, which are portable tinkering activities that have proved ideal for our site! These kits developed after months of brainstorming and planning – determining appropriate activities, sourcing materials, and testing out the projects. In…

Make, Break, Create

Here at Lodestar, our structure is continually evolving – there are always areas we can improve upon to better serve our students. The Lab makerspace is one of them. Initially, we planned to keep the makerspace inside of the K-3 Learning Lab, with one area devoted to free making, and another to independent kits. However,…

Building up Making at Lodestar

With Lodestar just starting out at its current site, building up functional and quality maker spaces can prove challenging. We want to create spaces where maker-centered learning shines, in which students can lead activities and teachers can facilitate collaboration, co-inspiration, and co-critique. Additionally, we want to model other facets of maker-centered classrooms, which are outlined…

360° Makerspaces

  We recently used google street view to take this photo 360° photo of our K-8 Creativity Lab space and then added it to our location on google maps. The great part of this is that others are doing the same and then tweeting their photos to @360makerspaces where we can learn from each other.…

Tips, Tricks, & Ideas: Cord Reels

These are a relatively new addition to our Creativity Lab, but they’ve been incredibly helpful. We installed these cord reels into our ceilings for easy access to power outlets, without the fuss of tangled extension cords that our students (and teachers!) are likely to trip over. These reels work something like window blinds: when not in…

Tips, Tricks, & Ideas: Our Wall of Materials

Our wall of materials gets photographed pretty frequently by visitors who want to know what we keep on-hand for our making, so I thought I’d share it with all of you. We store most of our materials in clear, plastic bins. These are color-coded by general making activity, and age range. Materials like white glue get stored…

Cutting Tools and Young Makers

Kids of pretty much any age can use tools. Determining which age groups can use what tools (with what kind of supervision) is the trick. When do you trust someone to use power tools? When do you trust a student to cut without supervision? In this post I will talk about cutting tools used in…