When the place that we call the “Makerspace”, first opened up, I was afraid I would have no use for it. The Makerspace was made from a grant given to our school by Intel. The space contains a garage door, multiple working spaces, tools such as saws (hand and electronic), hammers, drills, a laser cutter and much more. I thought that the class of PLTW would be another year of the occasional and rare visit into the space, if seriously needed. I was most definitely wrong.
We started the year straight off. Each different lesson you could learn online had to do with some certain aspect on hands on things, whether it be through a program or on wood. I started my module in Biomedical, as I thought it would be a breeze to go through. While in that module, I was always sidetracked by the innings and outings of new things made in the space. I constantly heard drills and saws; work being done. I made a promise to myself there that I would try new things that year, and push myself out of my comfort zone. Not like cutting my thumb off-which thankfully has not happened-but by learning to use the space to my advantage.
Slowly, but surely, I started to use things. Starting with the drills, moving on to saws, then eventually to my favorite, the Laser Cutter. I learned through my intelligent friend McClain, that by creating a piece in Adobe Illustrator, you could transfer that piece through a USB, engraving or cutting it into wood, acrylic, etc. Now that I know these things I use them every class period. Here’s a picture of a recent aspect of my latest project. To the right is a picture of the Laser Cutter I sawing its way through Fluorescent Acrylic.
Overall think the statement made by the Makerspace can teach those afraid to learn new things. Just like hearing “Pythagorean Theorem” and cringing. Not only did I come out of my own dome of fears, I also made my own statement. I can make new things, learn new subjects, and teach others just as well as anyone, as long as I have the right tools to do it.