Guiding students through crafting personally meaningful creative work and developing their confidence in using digital fabrication tools.
Partner Organization: CU Science Discovery
High school students with diverse interests in coding, robotics, art making, and creative expression would likely find themselves at home in a makerspace, but makerspaces and digital fabrication education are still not commonly available in many schools and communities.
CU Science Discovery is a STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) outreach program at the University of Colorado Boulder that connects students with STEM research happening on campus and unique campus resources through immersive, experiential summer learning experiences.
CU Science Discovery offered two Maker camps over the summer that taught high school students from around the world digital fabrication techniques (3D printing, laser cutting, programming, and electronics) through design challenges and personal projects. I developed the curriculum and lesson plans for these camps and facilitated the camps as well. Students spent the first half of their Science Discovery experience learning the basics of these tools and technologies, visiting local technology and electronics innovators such as Sparkfun and the ATLAS Institute, and developing their creative confidence through projects like toy dissections and creating game controllers out of unexpected objects.
The second half of this learning experience was dedicated to bringing a project to life using digital fabrication technologies and traditional crafting skills. An incredible diversity of projects were presented during the CU Science Discovery Expo, an event where campers from many different camps presented their final projects and research. Students created party robots, art pieces, games and game controllers, marble mazes, foosball tables, clocks, carousels, light up capes, and more.