When I first heard that we had a makerspace I was pretty excited. The previous year we had to work in this crowded little portable so I didn’t really know what to expect. Over the summer I had heard rumors about big donations being given to our school for that place, being given Macs along with other “luxurious” stuff. When I first stepped into the Makerspace I was a impressed. To be honest, I could not believe that the 8th graders were being given that amazing place to call their PLTW classroom, but there seemed to be something missing to it.
When we first got introduced to modules they seemed a little bit overwhelming but I was actually looking forward to creating stuff. I remember one of the first projects we did, which was to create a speaker. We had to create a speaker and my group and I watched through multiple videos on how to make one. We gathered the materials we could find and when it was finally finished, NO SOUND CAME OUT. I, like most of the class was quite disappointed with my “creation” but was still proud of my work nonetheless. The rest of the year was more or less the same.
In the second semester we had to come up with our “Maker Projects”, which was a project that was solely created for the purpose of presenting those projects in the year’s first Make-o-rama. The Mak-o-rama is an event where both students and adults present what they have been creating to everyone else while in the morning each advisory creates a dress out of upcycled materials. For my maker project I made little stuffed bunnies that were sewn together for the purpose of being hidden and making people smile. In the end we made less bunnies than expected but they turned out okay.
As of right now, I will be creating a skateboard. I have never done anything like this before but I am willing to learn. So far my group and I have designed what it will look like, the Austin Skyline on the top and a gradient trickling rainbow on the bottom. The designs may sound simple but it did take us a few classes where we just experimented on how it would look like. What I really want to say though, is that throughout this whole school year, I have experienced failure, and success, innovations and creation. I may be just 14 right now, but I have lived long enough to realize that people and all of creation itself need to experience failure to know what success feels like. When I look around the makerspace today, I can see exactly what was missing back then: the marvelous pieces of work made by the students that proudly give the “maker” to that little “space” of Earth that is dedicates itself to generating creativity.