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If Something Breaks…

Sometimes things break at our Museum. This particular case involved a computer with a broken power cord. This computer was designed to specifically run our Digital Dream Lab programming blocks station. Without this computer it meant that could not have the programming blocks out. Instead of just leaving a sign on the machine saying “broken, we are working on fixing this” we decided as a team to build a te
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We made a sloth

Before I started teaching in MAKESHOP I really didn’t make very many things at home.  Nowadays there is always some kind of project we are working on.  At my house we really like sewing and we really like sloths.  So we figured, why not make a stuffed sloth? We looked up a lot of pictures of real sloths to see how exactly the their facial markings looked.  We made a pattern on paper and then went on an adventur
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Scrap Wood Mallet

I have always liked the idea of making my own tools. While the complexities of an electric drill are far beyond me, a simple wooden mallet is well within reach. By making your own, you can customize it to fit your needs and aesthetic. A wooden mallet is great for tapping chisels and easing joints together. Unlike a metal hammer, it isn’t hard enough to dent chisels or mar a wooden project. Additionally, it is l
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Ramps!

Every once and a while we decide to totally transform MAKESHOP to meet the needs of a specific activity. For the past couple of months we had been brainstorming some way to play around with ramps and “Rube Goldberg Machines” in our space. Around the end of December we were given a donation of hundreds of cardboard tubes. We took this as a sign that we should come up with some kind of ramp activity soon. O
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Making a Collaborative Quilt

Over the last couple weeks, MAKESHOP began a quilting project. Everyone was invited to create a 5×5 inch square to add to our collaborative quilt. It has been a fun opportunity to learn all kinds of sewing techniques: from learning to thread a needle to operating a sewing machine. The response has been amazing; it looks like it’s going to be a big quilt! There are so many different ways to embellish each square
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Physics in Motion

A couple of weeks ago we let our visitors explore ramps on a very large scale. We cleared out a large space in MAKESHOP and let adults and kids explore with cardboard tubes, tape and ping pong balls. Photos don’t really do this activity justice. Below are several videos highlighting some of the more interesting creations during our ramp experiment. This was a ramp that I assembled with the help of several kids.
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