We all have a wonderful challenge: Our children are born as creators, scientists, thinkers, and makers! Yet, how do we nurture and foster their natural curiosity at home? How do we create spaces at home that support their explorations and allow for the all important “messing about” and process of discovery?
Here at Bixby School creating, making and using our amazing spaces inside and outside on our campus are part of our culture and how we think engaged and deep learning happens best. Whether it is our art classes, music, geography, math, writing, science or electives,- Bixby students and teachers are a community of makers, creators and learners together!
Often our students bring their ideas and engaged way of thinking home and our parents wonder how to support their interests and need to create at home.
Here is a short list of ideas that could turn your home into a maker studio (while preserving some sense of a home for all of you):
- Start with a clean surface and space that can become a maker station in your home. (You so not have to have a large home to do this!). Think outside the box (Do you have an underused table or kitchen desk? Is this an indoor or outdoor space? Could you create a new space by clearing out an underused area in your home?)
- Look into possibilities with your child on how to stock the area. If it is hard to decide, use your local resources: the art store, Resource, Pinterest for ideas. What grabs a current interest? Is there something new you want to try out? Is there something that your child is excited about (a topic, a material, a skill-cutting, sawing, soldering, painting).
- Think big or really little! Children often enjoy building big or tinkering little. Think about the scale of what they are interested in.
- Materials do not have to be expensive! Recyclables, loose parts, and natural materials from outside are all great choices to get started.
- Make space and time for your new area of exploration. Would it be fun to go there after breakfast on weekends or at the end of a long day? Would it be fun to explore with your child before you step back and let his/her creative juices flow? Offer a “maker’s jam” to your child: get comfy in old T-shirts than can handle paint and turn on some tunes-then create, invent, and tinker away!
A first project idea: A catapult! Challenge: How many ways can you built a table size catapult?
Possible parts and pieces for your maker’s space:
- Rubber bands (different types)
- 20 pencils
- Pompom balls
- Craft sticks
- Hot glue gun
- Elmer’s glue
- Paper clips
- Construction Paper
Send us a photo your design (email it to firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will share it here at Bixby School with our makers in their brand-new makers’ studio! You will have a chance to win a prize!
Admissions & Marketing Director; Alumni Development