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New STEM Saturdays for Grades 3-8: Hands-on learning the Makerspace Way

New STEM Saturdays for Grades 3-8: Hands-on learning the Makerspace Way

Join us for a new series of Saturday morning workshops at the UCR Extension Center based on the Makerspace ideology. Eager learners in grades 3-8 will participate in projects such as Green Screen Technology, Breaker Space, Digital Story Telling, Stop Motion Animation, Robotics, Coding, Engineering, and more. STEM Saturdays, 9:30 a.m.-noon, meet on the first Saturdays of the month. Parents may choose to drop their children off, or they can stay to join in the learning fun!

What is “Makerspace?” To put it simply, it’s DIY meets Education.  

Educator, blogger, and best-selling author, Laura Fleming, describes makerspace as “a place where young people have an opportunity to explore their own interests; learn to use tools and materials, both physical and virtual; and develop creative projects. Great makerspaces are unique to your community, vibrant for now, and sustainable into the future. They provide opportunities for kids to take their learning deeper. They create an inclusive learning environment that encourages tinkering, play, and open-ended exploration for all.”

Today’s culture of children has learned to consume technology and do many things with the swipe of an index finger. Makerspace learning is a constructionist movement designed to move beyond consumption and onto creation! The Maker Movement overlaps with the natural inclinations of children and the power of learning by doing.   

Mark Hatch, author of “The Maker Movement Manifesto,” believes that “the world is a better place as a participatory sport. Making is fundamental to what it means to be human. We must make, create, and express ourselves to feel whole. There is something unique about making physical things. These things are like little pieces of us and seem to embody portions of our souls. Be playful with what you are making, and you will be surprised, excited, and proud of what you discover.”

Makerspaces are perfect for kids who learn best by doing, and their accomplishments inspire them to excel in STEM subjects in school. The lessons are designed to transform the way kids think about learning. They complete hands-on projects to solve real-world problems that turns knowledge into action.

Upcoming makershops are scheduled for March 3, April 7, and May 5.  Topics for the next three workshops are "Building Bristlebots,"  "Making a 3D Paper Model," and "Building a Self-Sustaining Rainforest Terrarium." For more information about STEM Saturday Workshops or to enroll, visit our website at https://www.extension.ucr.edu/course/33679750/EDUC864/RSTEMMakershops

Learn more about Makerspace learning at http://www.makerspaceforeducation.com/.

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