GUEST AUTHOR: Deborah L. Griner, Media Specialist, Makerspace Facilitator, STEMtober Rockstar, Greco Middle School
Once upon a time, there was a school Media Center that had a drab little corner that went sadly unused and empty, except for a few boxes of old books. Then one day, an organization named Heart of America and its partner AbbVie Foundation chose that school library to receive a Makerspace renovation. They transformed the sad space into a bright, colorful area full of technology, crafts, a Lego wall and actively engaged students!
It’s been more than a year since we had our Makerspace renovation in Greco Media Center, but our fairy tale continues. Every day, Greco students venture into new worlds of STEM activities and creative projects that showcase their problem-solving skills and fuel their imaginations. The Makerspace is a student-centered space that encourages our kids to explore diverse interests and express their creativity. Students love it for all the cool gadgets they can play with and teachers appreciate the opportunities for lessons with unique instruction and student collaboration.
In our Makerspace, students have coded robots, used Legos to learn about fractions, crafted structures out of Popsicle sticks and wired circuit boards to sound an alarm. In one Ancient History class, sixth grade students supplemented their teachings about Egyptian pyramids in our Makerspace. They built pyramids with Legos, sketched them on an Ipad and shaped them with paper.
The Makerspace is also central to our celebrations and events throughout the school year. Students programmed our Sphero robot to dance the Nutcracker ballet during Greco Tech Week and crafted glow stick lightsabers during Star Wars Challenge Days. Even our faculty members got to enjoy the Makerspace with a contest to design holiday wreaths from Legos.
Overall, the Makerspace renovation in Greco Media Center revitalized our library into a hub of STEM activities and creative learning for the entire school. And now our students in our Makerspace, in that little corner of the library, are living happily ever after.
Enjoy photos in the Flickr album below of Greco students in their Makerspace throughout the month of STEMtober, and also some photos from the original makeover. Thanks again Abbvie and Heart of America!