I like our textbook, “Invent to Learn,” but I have some issues with chapter 11 or “Make Your Own Maker Day.” As a principal, managing, planning and publicizing events is part of what I do. Chapter 11 basically gives you every idea, technique and advice on how to plan a Makerspace event. If you are going to plan a Makerspace event, please don’t take every piece of advice Martinez and Stager give. If you do, you will have the largest, most overplanned event in the history of your town. I guess, if your goal is to have a huge, overplanned event that takes lots of work and effort to pull off, then go for it. Good luck on planning your next event or encore.
Of course, I think the point is to create a huge, national event in as many places as possible. This is very apparent in the “Day of Making” website which is basically an advertisement for a Maker Day. There are also great videos and article explaining what a Makerspaces are and what they produce. You can find it at http://makezine.com/day-of-making/.
In the “Final Maker Day Toolkit,” the University of British Columbia has produced a 49-page guide for planing a Maker Day. Our textbook only gives us 7 pages. These Makerspace people don’t mess around. For our purposes I will try to summarize what our textbook suggests for planning a Maker Day.
Martinez and Stager suggest the following ideas for planning a Maker Day at your school:
- Involve kids every way possible
- Let them plan activities
- Make posters
- Run the classes
- Make the materials for the day of the event
- Marketing, marketing & marketing
- Decorate your room with examples of Making
- Send information to TV, newspaper, radio and more
- Use social media
- Have kids send personalized notes to people they know
- Rent roadside billboards and pay people to spread the word on social media (Just kidding on this one, but if you have the money…..)
- Scheduling is important
- Start of with a bang and an exciting hands-on beginning activity
- Keep things moving
- Have lots of different types of activities
- Highlight other areas of your school
- Let the school band or choir perform at the Maker Day
- Make sure you have enough materials (Plan for more than you think you will need)
- Break out the cool stuff
- Let people use the wearable computing, robotics and other neat stuff
- Make good use of bringing all these people together
- Use this opportunity to find experts who may be able to help in the future
- Fundraise at the event if possible
- Publicize what you are doing by getting photos, videos and articles out to the public and your website
- Wrap it up
- Announce the next event
- Clean up
- Thank your volunteers, presenters and sponsors
Having a Maker Day sounds like a lot of work, but also like a very fun event. Good luck with your planning!
Day of making. Make:. Retrieved on 7-9-17 at http://makezine.com/day-of-making/.
Maker day 2014. (2014). The University of British Columbia. Retrieved on 7-9-17 at http://www.itabc.ca/sites/default/files/docs/discover/Final%20MakerDayToolKit.pdf.
Martinez, S. L. Invent to learn: Making, tinkering, and engineering in the classroom. Constructing Modern Knowledge Press. Kindle Edition.