All About Makerspaces

Makerspaces are becoming some of the most dynamic new spaces in any K12 environment.  Also known as Fab Labs, Hackerspaces, Makelabs, and Makerhoods – you can find them popping up in libraries, designated classroom spaces, and various other areas.  Makerspaces are where students can explore, invent, and create uninhibited to their heart’s desire.  Excerpted from a recent Educause article, below are our Top 5 Makerspace Facts:

1.  What’s a Makerspace?

“This idea of a collaborative studio space for creative endeavors has caught hold in education, where the informal combination of lab, shop, and conference room form a compelling argument for learning through hands-on exploration.”  The most appealing aspect of Makerspaces are that they are what you make them!  

2.  How does it work?

“Used by students, faculty, and staff, Makerspaces have become arenas for informal, project-driven, self-directed learning, providing workspace to tinker, try out solutions, and hear input from colleagues with similar interests.”  The approach may be casual, but the end result is passionately driven by the individual’s own interests.

3.  Makerspace Significance

“Where these spaces are open to use by faculty, students, and staff from a cross-section of content areas, they promote multidisciplinary thinking and learning, enriching the projects that are built there and the value of the Makerspace as an educational venue.”  One of the many benefits of a Makerspace is the opportunity for collaboration and the exchange of ideas with others during the project’s progress.

4.  Makerspaces and Learning

“Makerspaces allow students to take control of their own learning as they take ownership of projects they have not just designed but defined. At the same time, students often appreciate the hands-on use of emerging technologies and a comfortable acquaintance with the kind of experimentation that leads to a completed project. Where Makerspaces exist on campus, they provide a physical laboratory for inquiry-based learning.”

5.  The Future

“As Makerspaces have become more common on campuses and have found their place in public libraries and community centers, their influence has spread to other disciplines and may one day be embraced across the curriculum.”