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How-To: Origami Garrison Cap

Recently at MAKESHOP we’ve been wearing a lot of hats… Literally! A lot of them were pretty heavy on precision cutting and sewing, but I figured out how to make an awesome garrison cap with only a few materials.   Supplies: An iron Spray starch A bandanna-sized handkerchief (depending on the size of your head and intended size of hat, a smaller handkerchief might work better.)   Directions: Firs
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Making a Board Game

  How do you make a board game?   All you really need is a table, pencils, a stack of paper and your imagination.  A couple of weeks ago we allowed visitors to play and add to a simple board game that we started.  The end result was amazing…And really challenging. Most of the rules forced you to do some sort of physical challenge… …Or made you go back to start. The open-ended nature of the
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Field Trip: Shaler Elementary

Nick (one of our Maker Corps Members) and I got to spend a couple of hours at Shaler Elementary solving a lot of woodworking problems alongside amazing and diligent students.  The kids got the chance to experience all of the tools we had brought, along with safe techniques to use them properly.  After a lengthy orientation with the tools and processes, the kids were given the freedom to create whatever their hearts d
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Field Trip: Robinson Township Library

Derek and I had the privilege of using the Robinson Township Library’s extremely large activity space to teach woodworking.  We taught visitors how to use hammers, hand drills, saws, sand paper and screwdrivers. We planned to have the families experience and learn about the tools.  Some of the families asked if they could create something (a sculpture or a structure) using the tools and wood.  We would never st
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Another Gear Idea

Derek, a new employee at the Museum and a local teacher in Pittsburgh, presented a great idea to me a couple of days ago.  He wants to make a mechanical version of our circuit blocks.  He thinks that it is important to utilize various types of gears to create blocks that visitors can connect together to further explore mechanization.  To explain this concept only in words is very confusing. A couple of Sundays ago, D
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Puppet Prototype

  Each month, our staff picks a programmatic theme for MAKESHOP that helps us to decide on what activities to provide.  Our theme in MAKESHOP for the month of February is puppets.  We decided to explore different ways to make puppets by reimagining recycled materials, sewing finger puppets and cloth puppets, building marionettes  and playing with shadows puppets.  As always, we will integrate digital media into
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