Happy Summer, Everyone!
It’s been a little while since I posted, but I blame summer in general. Summer Reading is keeping me crazy, busy, and happy at work and summertime always means more travels, more time outside, and less time for blogging.
However, I have to share how awesome our Maker Camp has been!
This summer several libraries in my system are affiliate sites for Google Maker Camp. If you don’t have Maker Camp on your radar for this summer, you need to put it on your radar for next summer. Basically, we filled out a short application online expressing our interest in hosting a Maker Camp and a few weeks later we were approved as an affiliate site. That means we got a box full of goodies from Google and Make to support 6 weeks of making at our library. Our library system also purchased a lot of additional supplies to make our of our making dreams come true.
We’ve set up our camp as a drop in program for 3 days each week. Each week has a theme decided by Google and each day we have a different project. The whole program is structured around making, creativity, problem solving, team work, and fun. The kids have really embraced the camp and have brought a very creative energy to our summer. You can see some of the cool things we’ve done on our camp’s Google+ site. We’re almost halfway through, so there will be some more cool projects added in the coming weeks!
Some of the projects we’ve done so far are LED light up pipe cleaner super heroes, DIY instrument building, ice cream making, cardboard building challenges, and stop motion animation videos. I’ve been pinning lots of potential project ideas on my Maker Camp Pinterest Board.
Each week, we spend about an hour making and about an hour sharing what we made. The sharing involves showing the other campers in the room and using our library’s iPads to take photos and videos of our projects that we later post online.
The making is very child-led. I love that the maker culture is very do-it-yourself and allows kids to really tap into their creativity and problem solve when things don’t work out. We’ve definitely had projects that didn’t turn out as planned, but instead of a meltdown the kids were curious, wanted to figure out what went wrong, and try again. I’ve been amazed by some of their ideas over the past couple of weeks and can’t wait to keep making!!