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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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Re-purposed Book Chisel Box

We have been expanding our collection of woodworking tools, and needed a way to store chisels. A good storage solution would keep them from banging around in a drawer, thereby keeping them sharp. It should also be easy to store on a shelf, or take for use on a project outside MAKESHOP. This unassuming book is now the cozy home to six chisels. For lack of a proper sized box or thin wood to make one, bookboard would do
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What is an Armature?

An armature is like a skeleton (sometimes made out of wire) that can be bent and held into certain positions. As a movable sculpture it can be used to make stop-motion animations. Guest Maker Anisha Deshmane visited MAKESHOP on August 16th to explore the process of making armatures with our visitors. We used steel wire and pipe cleaners to make the skeletons and cotton stuffing and colored masking tape to give the sk
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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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Making Problems and Solving Problems

Usually it is the teacher who provides the problems for the students to solve. At the Museum and especially in MAKESHOP we like to give teachers an opportunity create some problems for themselves. Teacher trainings might be my favorite thing to do in MAKESHOP. Being a teacher myself I see the benefits to these kinds of professional development opportunities. Having a group of teachers learn how to do something with l
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Guitar Making Workshop (8+)

Join Guest Maker Saturn Millner for a guitar making workshop! June is our Sound Making month in MAKESHOP and we’re kicking it off with a super fun workshop. Learn how to construct a working 3-string guitar from materials- new and old. Drill, sand, assemble and decorate! Each child will create a functional guitar to take home. Two workshop slots are available: 10:00am- noon 2:00- 4:00pm Tickets for participating
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