Lesson One: What is a Makerspace?
Describe key elements of a makerspace. Justify how a makerspace can transform student learning.
Makerspaces are emerging in work spaces, libraries, and schools across the country as places to imagine, design, and create. Communities are benefiting from makerspaces, as people of all ages find a space to collaborate and use tools that wouldn’t otherwise be accessible. Since makerspaces are often seen implemented in intermediate and university settings, it can be difficult to imagine how elementary school students can use them. Makerspaces are meaningful spaces that allow elementary school students to think creatively, practice social skills, collaborate with peers, and use engineering design processes to solve authentic problems.
A makerspace is a special place where students create a product to solve a problem. Tools and materials are located for students to use and are easily labeled. Students follow an engineering design process to plan, build, evaluate, reflect, and redesign their product. Children work collaboratively with peers to come up with real life solutions to their problem or project requirements.