Maker Ed and Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh Welcome New Cohort of Hubs to “Making Spaces” to Sustain Maker Education

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: With continued support from Google, six new hubs join national network of regional hubs that sustainably integrate maker education across the country

Oakland, Calif., September 2018 – Building on three years of foundational work, leading to sustained and community-oriented maker education efforts, and with continued support from Google, Maker Education Initiative (Maker Ed) and Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh (CMP) are excited to extend our national program, Making Spaces: Expanding Maker Education Across the Nation, to bring aboard new hubs and support sites eager to integrate making into their environments.

The program aims to maximize the collective impact of its support by employing an innovative model where multiple participating educational sites, such as schools,are paired with a nearby hub (such as a school district, a library, a museum, or a community organization). These hubs will provide sites with professional development and support to help jumpstart and sustain maker education in classrooms through community support. In particular, hubs and sites tackle the crucial topic of visioning to drive their planning, implementation, and practices. Google will be providing support to these hubs and schools, continuing the extension and expansion of the work from Cohorts 1 and 2.

For the 2018-2019 academic year, the Making Spaces program will have six participating hubs that will each work with 5 to 10 local sites, including schools and out-of-school-time organizations with at least 50% serving disadvantaged communities. Our Cohort 3 hubs are: Indiana University School of Education MILL Makerspace in Bloomington, IN; Idaho STEM Action Center in Boise, ID; BLDG 61 at Boulder Public Library in Boulder, CO; ideaLABS at Denver Public Library in Denver, CO; Fab Lab Houston at BakerRipley in Houston, TX; and El Garage Project Hub in Mexicali, Mexico.

In past years, Cohort 1 (10 hubs for the years 2016-2017 & 2017-2018) and Cohort 2 (5 hubs for the years 2017-2018 and 2018-2019) have worked to support schools in their regional areas. We now have a total of 21 hubs. In addition to our newest ones, the hubs from Cohort 1 and Cohort 2 include:

Overall, the impact of their work is significant:

More than 100 schools have been served in the first two years of the program, and as part of those efforts, more than $390,000 have been raised to support the growth, development, and sustainability of maker-centered learning in these regions.

Through focused efforts on professional development and community building, the network of hubs have worked together to learn from and share experiences. Each approaches the program with a different lens, and in turn, they have expressed that “the ways that the hubs in the network have envisioned this project is different than I would have. I love seeing and becoming inspired by the variety of different ways to make this project work.” In addition, “[the program] has given us an opportunity to experiment with models for how we can leverage our assets as experienced maker educators to offer services to schools that want to learn from our work”.

This work all started in 2015-2016, when CMP piloted a year-long run of the program with 10 schools in Southwestern Pennsylvania that collectively raised more than $100,000 to launch maker education in their schools. Based on lessons learned during this pilot phase, CMP also developed the Making Spaces toolkit to support the trajectory, professional development, and visioning of regional hubs and sites. “We are thrilled to be able to scale this program to the national level to get more resources to more youth so they can start tinkering, creating and making,” says Jane Werner, Executive Director of Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. “A unique program that began in our region can now benefit youth around the country.”

Maker Ed’s Executive Director Kyle Cornforth adds, “Building capacity regionally is a critical part of our strategy to utilize maker-centered learning to transform educational experiences for every child, and we are so honored to do this work in partnership with CMP and Google. This new cohort brings us to 21 hubs around the country, and I can’t wait to see how the learning, growth, and collaboration of these amazing new regional hubs will push our collective work forward.” For more information, please visit the Making Spaces program website at makered.org/making-spaces.

About Maker Ed

Maker Ed is a nonprofit organization that envisions a world where every child’s passion comes to life by providing multiple pathways for different learning styles with learning opportunities situated in varied cultural contexts. ​We believe maker-centered learning has the power to transform the educational experience for every child, a​nd we imagine a future in which all children––regardless of class, gender, race, ability, or geography––have equitable access to learning experiences that support the development of their own agency and problem solving dispositions as they become lifelong change-makers. Maker Ed plays a national leadership role in both broadening access to and deepening the impact of maker education for youth. Maker Ed is a project of the Tides Center, a registered 501(c)3 non-profit public charity. For more information, visit the Maker Ed website and follow @MakerEdOrg for updates.

About Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh

Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh welcomes more than 306,000 visitors annually and provides “real stuff” experiences for play, learning, and fun. The Museum’s permanent exhibit MAKESHOP® was built in 2011 to create a space for children and families to make, play and design using the same materials, tools and processes used by professional artists, builders, programmers and creators of all kinds. The Museum’s maker-focused initiatives include serving as a Maker Corps site for the Maker Education Initiative, Mobile MAKESHOP, Youth Maker workshops, MAKEnight (21+) events and presenting Maker Faire Pittsburgh 2015 and 2016. For more information, visit www.pittsburghkids.org and follow @pghkids.

About Google’s Making & Science

Making & Science is an initiative from Google to inspire future scientists and makers. Learn more about our programs, events, media, and the new Science Journal app at makingscience.withgoogle.com.


 

Click here to download a PDF version of this press release.

For more information, contact:

Keyana Stevens
Communications Manager, Maker Ed
(510) 655-1935 | keyana@makered.org

 

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