Aug 23, 2015
Fresh off a busy run during Summer Reading, the Makerspace program for teens is settling in for the school year. Over the summer dozens of teens were able to explore 3D design and printing, electronics kits, and robotics kits. Now we’re in the final stages of our LED lighting project (look for our handiwork in the Teen Fiction room soon). Next we’re focusing on getting participants ready to run their own projects.
This week we’re conducting 3D printer training, after which our participants will be able to handle the entire process, from preparing their models with the software to setting up the machine, on their own. At this point, they’ll effectively be able to take an entirely new object from being a concept in their heads to a virtual design and then to an actual three-dimensional object. These skills are applicable to a host of jobs, including design work, architecture, engineering, medicine, and many others.
In the coming months we’ll also explore other skills. We have sewing classes scheduled to get beginners up and running so they can do their own costuming, cosplaying, or other fabric crafts. We’ll be embarking on a new group project where we create solar powered, Bluetooth-enabled speakers, all the while providing teens with the resources and opportunities to pursue their own projects or explore their passions.
Fundamentally, the Makerspace is not about 3D printers, or any other piece of technology. It’s about developing the attitude that making and tinkering is something we can all do, and acquiring the skills and confidence to do it well. These are the attributes that will serve our participants well for years to come in their personal, scholastic, and professional lives.
Young Adult Librarian