A Case of the PTA

[Ed note: This is Kevin’s experience on the  Avonworth PTA visit, which Scott Miller recently wrote a guest post about!] Usually when we teach workshops in MAKESHOP they are for students or groups of teachers. For this particular workshop I got the chance to teach a slightly different audience. Members of the Avonworth School District PTA wanted to have a “making” experience in MAKESHOP. We let them
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Children and Parents at the Avonworth Primary makerspace

Guest Post: Unleash the Parent Makers

This post is part of a series that will explore making in elementary, middle, and high schools. The series is part of the Kickstarting Making in Schools project in which Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh will choose six schools to integrate making along with using Kickstarter, an online crowdfunding platform, to raise necessary funds for their projects. by Scott Miller, Avonworth Primary Center Over the past year
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Kids work on a post-it note based board game design

Game Design Workshop

On March 15th, as part of the 4th annual National STEM Video Game Challenge (presented by the Smithsonian in partnership with The Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop and E-Line Media), 16 kids showed up in the museum theater to spend a few hours learning about game design. Beginning with some discussion and sharing about what makes a good designer and what games everybody enjoys, participants then went through
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A cardboard loom

Weave Weave Weave All the Way Home

Weaving happens all the time in the MAKESHOP on our big floor loom, and sometimes on its little cousin the table loom: We use it to make scarves, mostly, which hang we hang up for display and inspiration. The weaving pulls in many visitors because it takes about three weeks for a full eight- or nine-foot-long scarf to be completed. This time scale sets it apart from other MAKESHOP activities; there’s no chance
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Art Conference + Sewing = ???

In September, Pittsburgh hosted the Arts and Education Partnership National Forum (AEPF). Our executive director, Jane Werner, was asked to speak at the Forum and we were asked to have an accompanying table with a small taste of what goes on in MAKESHOP. We brought along a lot of example projects, wooden joinery blocks, circuit blocks, soldering tools, etc. We also brought along a lot of sewing materials. The plan wa
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Katie and Molly swaddled in the Shibori quilt

PERSERVERANCE (subtitle: What I Learned While Quilting on a Deadline)

Have you ever agreed to something without thinking about what it actually entailed? I’m a Yes Person. I say yes all. the. time. By nature, I love helping people, staying busy, being creative and feeling accomplishment. Sometimes I don’t think about what the steps are to actually get me to where I need to be—but I’ll usually say yes to a challenge regardless. I was recently asked to work with the MAK
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