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Animation at Youth Maker Night

We spent our last Youth Maker Night exploring the process of stop-motion animation. We set up a lot of different “animation stations” throughout MAKESHOP. Some of them utilized an iPad app called iMotionHD. Another used an original computer program designed by one of our Exhibits Technicians. And another used a traditional camera and tripod. A group of teens decided to animate a couple of simple, wooden t
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Underwater MAKESHOP

We have made several large, community projects in our workshop space before. Visitors have helped to create cardboard cities, newspaper sculptures and forts. For our recent “Free Admission” day at the Museum (and to celebrate the beginning of summer) our workshop was transformed into an underwater aquarium. Visitors spent the next couple of days filling the aquarium with fish, sea turtles, underwater cars
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Wedding Decorations

A wedding is a great excuse to make stuff. In the case of my recent matrimony there were a lot of hand made things. My wife and I (along with some other helpers) spent the last year making decorations, invitations and other essential wedding materials. It started off with the creation of our “save the date” announcements. These went through a couple of prototyping stages before we settled on a final produ
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College Trip

I recently had the opportunity to teach two workshops at an event for girls interested in science hosted at Robert Morris University. As usual I gave the kids minimal instruction and then allowed them a large amount of time to explore the materials and components. They were given the chance to make something — anything — out of recycled materials, motors and batteries. This group of girls really took this
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Animation and Teachers

We recently held a Maker Educator Boot Camp (our version of an exhaustive professional development for teachers and educators) at West Liberty University’s Center for Arts and Education. The teachers got the chance to learn some teaching techniques centered around making and exploring.  I was only able to attend one day of the four day Boot Camp but just one day was special enough. I taught the digital applicat
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MAKESHOP in the park

It is summer and that means that we are able to move some of our MAKESHOP activities outside. Last year we had a bike-cart that some of the staff would take out to the local parks to do small activities with the community. This year we got the opportunity to provide an outdoor activity for a weekend event Buhl Park in front of the Museum. I recently discovered a water rocket launching kit in our basement storage. We
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