As a kid, I cringed when the teacher told us that we were doing a group project. As a teacher, I promoted cooperative groups, and as a parent, I empathized with my daughters when they had to deal with working in groups. There was always the one person that had to do all the work and the one person that never did any of the work. I always hated that my grade depended on others, but I know now that working in groups is “real life.” We all need to work together, but it never has been my method of choice.
This last week's Maker Night meeting changed my mind. Our goal was to finalize plans and figure out the cost of a giant Light Bright for the museum. Looking at the materials list, we realized that we had some plexiglass from an old exhibit. It was only 20”x40” and much smaller than the 48”x 96” board we were thinking about, but a great size to make a working model. We could work out any kinks on a smaller scale and then use it for some of our outreach programs. From there, the ideas just kept flying. We used glue sticks to test the size and spacing of the colored rods, discovered interesting websites for materials, and came up with a plan for a smaller Light Bright.
Developing a plan for the next meeting would have marked a successful meeting, but it didn’t stop there. To get these great minds to think about future builds, I introduced our idea for redesigning our gift shop and transforming it into the STEAM Shop. We want to give the gift shop a defined space and a Steampunk vibe.
Again, ideas went flying, and now that build is on its way to becoming a reality! Thanks to all that came Tuesday night. A special “Thank you” to Sabrina, our newest board member, for believing in the giant Light Bright project and recruiting friends. I can’t wait for our next meeting to begin building our mobile Light Bright and get to know these amazing people.
Please join us the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month and share your skills and talents or increase your “maker vocabulary” by learning new skills. If you are looking to make a difference in our community, or your bowling shoes don’t fit anymore and you are looking for something different to do, we would love for you to be a part of the Emerald Coast Science Center Maker Group.