St-Anthony MakerFaire, April 30th, 2015 – Top Ten Rules for a Successful MakerFaire

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This is the second in a series of blog posts written by Cathy Iverson, the library tech at St.Luke and St. Anthony schools – she is certainly the glue that has brought us together and made the MakerFaire happen!

 

As a follow-up to my last Blog post, St. Anthony Makerspace: Our Seven Top Tools!

I’d like to tell you about our incredibly successful, first ever, Mini Maker Faire!!!

 

On April 30th, we finally saw our much anticipated MakerFaire come to life. After weeks and countless hours of planning sessions, tweaking schedules, texts, Tweets, and emails, the day was ours and We rocked IT!

 

Our grade 5/6’s here at St. Anthony were asked to break into committees to help facilitate this epic day. Well, they certainly “rose to the occasion” and were instrumental in making this the success it was. Thanks to their teachers for all their patience and support during this time, the students outdid themselves on so many levels:)

 

As the buses arrived there was a buzz in the air. Both the Kitigan Zibi and St-Luke Ottawa students were welcomed at the main entrance by a giant banner and our Welcoming Committee, who led them to the gym where each student was given a lanyard with their name, school and top 3 activities for the day. After a few welcoming words from our Principal, Paul McGuire, one of our main organizers, Reg McCulley, gave the students instructions on how the day would proceed.

Reg McCulley, University of Ottawa student and uberorganizer
Reg McCulley, University of Ottawa student and uberorganizer

 

It was then time to start the Demos in the gym.  Students were transitioned from demo to demo so as to not create any gridlock at one particular station. An amazing music Playlist,  chosen by one of our student committees, added to the excitement and anticipation.

 

Here’s a list of what we had going on:

 

Jeff Ross/Raspberry Pi/ Minecraft servers

Minecraft Master Game Designer

Activity Station

students had the chance to experience a virtual minecraft environment - pretty cool!
students had the chance to experience a virtual minecraft environment – pretty cool!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Luc Lalande, 3D Printing/Minecraft “Creepers”

Minecraft and 3D Printing Station

Demo and Activity station

 

C:\Users\Reggie\AppData\Local\Packages\microsoft.windowscommunicationsapps_8wekyb3d8bbwe\AC\Temp\{C274BEE1-6ADA-4FFE-8CF9-54D1423CDB24}.tmp

 

Marlaina Loveys Lego Bristlebots and Mazes

Activity Station


Bristlebot Kit - Single Packhttp://1.bp.blogspot.com/--We4KSdqx90/TWw5s5UnjTI/AAAAAAAABss/hQeRgYrg4kw/s400/Lego%2Bmaze.JPG

 

Rick Alexanderson (St-Peter High School) CARL Robot demo

Demo

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CARL Robot Demo

 

 

Alison Evans Adnani Makey Makey

Demo

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Makey Makey Demo

 

 

 

Luke Van Shaik and Brittini Ogden LED paper airplanes

Activity Station

 

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LED paper airplanes

 

St-Anthony grade 5/6 student-led Demo Committee – Dash and Sphero Robots

Demo

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Student led obstacle course with Spheros

 

At 12:30 all the students were sent outside to enjoy a pizza lunch under a bright sunny sky. (Thank you Tracey Crowe of University of Ottawa, you are fabulous!!) They stayed outside for an extra 15 minutes to get some air, shoot some hoops, play a little ball hockey and mingle.

 

After this nice break they moved on to the “hands-on” portion of the day and started on their pre-selected activities.  Discoveries were made,Wow” moments were plentiful and opportunities to collaborate with students from other schools were now a reality.

 

To add to my St-Anthony MakerSpace: Top Seven Tools. here are my Top Ten Rules for a Successful MakerFaire:

  1. Network – Get out there and find like-minded innovators)

  2. Communicate –  Find a suitable platform. We used Asana or Google

  3. Committees (Empowering students is a Powerful tool).

  4. Delegate – Divide and conquer. (People WANT to help. Let them)

  5. Find Sponsors to help with funding.

  6. Know your physical space limitations.

  7. Enlist your best organizer (Reg McCulley, you KNOW you are!!)

  8. Always have a plan B

  9. Food – Kids like food.

  10. Pray 🙂

 

I would consider this event a monumental success. The students enjoyed it, learned from it and were empowered by it.  There couldn’t possibly be more criteria for success than that.


Thank you Paul, for your innovative  spirit, because ultimately, without you, this would never have happened.

 

It really does “take a village…”

Just had to add this little video – some of the highlights of the day

 

Cathy Iverson

Library Technician

white-space: pre-wrap;”>St Luke Ottawa/ St. Anthony

 

Our first school Maker Faire!

Our first Maker Faire will involve three schools. It is our attempt to bring together junior students from three schools along with a very innovative group of people interested in makerspaces.  We have never done this before, but the learning and collaboration will be great.

One of the great things about this project is that we have the assistance of a number of student teachers who are doing an amazing job of putting all this together.  From contacting resource people to take on demonstrations and workshops to organizing our grade 6 students to host the event, these students are pretty much doing everything.

 

The schedule calls for students around 10:00 to start off with some ice-breakers – the mix of students will be really interesting – one of the schools is coming from the Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg First Nation.  The University of Ottawa, a major partner in this project works closely with this school.  This should be the beginning of a very interesting partnership between our three schools.

 

We are asking our partners in this venture to supply demonstrations and workshops for the students.   Presenters will be asked to demonstrate the use of a piece of technology (i.e. 3D printer, Makey Makey, etc.) or prepare a very short interactive activity related to the chosen piece of technology. Activities should be no longer than 10 minutes and should be able to be carried out either on the table or on the floor close to the table. The demo booths should be able to accommodate 3 to 5 students. Clean up and preparation time should be minimal in order to prepare for the next group of students who will visit the demo booth.Demonstrations could include:

  • Raspberry Pi Minecraft Server ; a Virtual Reality headset that at the same time shows the inside of the Minecraft world or some other virtual world concurrently with the Raspberry Pi server.
  • a 3D scanner to scan busts of the kids and create a file that can be 3D printed or modified using 3D modelling software (eg. add cat ears, or pointy vulcan ears, long witch nose, etc.) 3D scan
  • playdoh creations that could then be 3D printed in plastic.
  • 3D image can also be
  • Use of a makey-makey as an interface to a Game or music program in processing.
  • a demo of programming in Scratch.
  • Run Scratch and Arduino/makey-makey demo in standalone instance on laptop or Raspberry Pi.

All of this has been suggested by just one member of our creative team!

Demonstrations would be followed by workshops that would be at least one hour in length.  This would give the students an opportunity to explore some aspect of maker culture in more depth.  For the workshops, the presenter will be asked to run the same activity station twice during the Maker Faire (11:15-12:15 and 12:50-1:50). Of the five activity stations to be scheduled, the students will have the option of choosing two. The student’s selections and the rotation schedule will be prepared prior to the actual event day. The activity stations will need to accommodate between 12 and 15 students.

Possible workshops include computer deconstruction, work with LittleBits, run by students, LED paper airplanes and robot building.

We still have a few weeks to put this all together, but this promises to be a really wonderful experience for everyone!

 

could we see these at our Maker Faire??

From Makerspace to Maker Faire – a collaborative project

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We have been experimenting with our makerspace for the past six months.  There is no question that the club we are currently running has been a major success with the students.  Now it is time to take it to the next level.

We are planning our first school-based maker faire.  This will involved several elementary schools, the University of Ottawa and some really innovative makers here in Ottawa like Maker Junior and other groups.

The maker faire tradition in Ottawa is growing.  Last year, the first  mini-maker faire was held and over  6000 people attended over the  two days.  The first full maker faire is now scheduled for next November 7-8  at Lansdowne Park the organizers are expecting 10,000 participants.

We work closely with another school – St. Luke.  They have done some amazing projects including the construction of an entire city in their learning commons.  At our school, we are trying to figure out how Arduino works and we are hoping to use Raspberry pi as a server to get Minecraft working in the learning commons.

We have yet to see a 3D printer or build any robots, but we are hoping that the school maker faire will move us all to the next level.

This project calls for lots of collaboration.  We have developed an ‘innovation team’ that includes elementary school principals, high school teachers, university professors, Faculty of Education students and local makers.  It is a group with lots of talent, resources and ideas and it will be this group that puts together the maker faire at our school.

We also have a new partner – students and teachers from Kitigan Zibi school in Maniwaki.  We have never had contact with this school, but it will be great to have them as partners in this project.  We have just been introduced to some of their staff through the Faculty of education at the University of Ottawa.

What will the day look like?  We are not entirely sure, but we know we want the students to have the chance to explore and make new things.  We want to expose them to the best of maker culture here in Ottawa.

So far, we want the students to learn and actually use 3D printers.  We will be getting a supply through Luc Lalande, the Executive Director, Entrepreneurship Hub at University of Ottawa and a real champion of maker culture here is Ottawa.

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Luc is a great supporter of innovation here in Ottawa

We have also discussed hands-on workshops involving Ardunio kits and Leggo and additional workshops involving Makey Makey kits.

Rick Alexanderson from St Peter High School will volunteer CARL the robot at the maker faire and  bring the Robot and provide information on workshops provided free to students by Carleton University.    Further CARL the robot will be then donated to the makerspace.   This is a line following robot and can do a few tricks  –  it is also a kit so teachers can look at the parts and see how this easy snap together the robot.  Rick works on really innovative projects with the Carleton University Department of Engineering.  

The workshops will be an hour long and we hope to have five options for students to choose from.  Each students will be able to choose three out of the five workshops.

The event will take place on April 30 and will probably be held from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.

We are really looking forward to this, the maker faire will really push us to collaborate with many diverse partners and it will challenge all our students to really develop a better understanding of how to build, create and innovate.

We will use this blog to keep a running record of our progress as we work towards our April 30 deadline.

Lots to look forward to!

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Learning about robots and the Ottawa Makerfaire

I had the best day – I have never seen so much innovation and cool stuff in one place – ever.

Carleton Autonomous Robotics Learning Centre

 

This was  a pretty amazing opportunity for all of us.  I met Rick Alexanderson – a teacher in our school board – today at the Ottawa Maker Faire – a truly wonderful event that is on again tomorrow (Sunday). I sat on a panel with him and the more I heard from him the more I stopped talking – this is a guy you really need to listen to.  This is a guy who has been around and has seen lots of stuff.  When you meet people like that, it is best to keep quiet and just listen – you might learn a few things.

He is affiliated with Carleton University and they are willing to hold an instruction session for teachers and students who are interested in developing a maker culture at your school.  Rick has found his own partners, he is not waiting for others to catch up – he is making change and offering this to us.

From what I understand, you can register for workshops they he puts on with the university.  After your day,  you and your students return to the school and teach them what you just have learned.  Everyone ends up with a robot – how cool is that!

Rick Alexanderson is the future of education – and educational entrepreneur who is offering the rest of us a chance to learn some amazing stuff.

I could have listened to him all day!

Our informal networks and PLNs are truly our life blood.  There will never again be a good reason to wait for change to come to you – you need to go to the change!

Find a way to start a makerspace.  Get your teachers and students creating – this is what true education has always been about!

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