- How might we remind our community that we are all makers?
- How might we make students’ creative ideas tangible?
- How might we design a space that invites creative and industrious behavior?
- How might we create a space that communicates our culture of making?
- How might we make a learning space that is magical?
- Industrious. Buzz. Collaborative. Transdisciplinary. Shared purpose. Shared learning.
At MVPS we start with questions and divergent thinking. The how might we’s listed above are just some of the questions our team is wrestling with as we work toward creating our maker-community. We’re not designing maker spaces; we’re building a maker community.
A maker space might be considered any space with the tools and materials to create – the art studio, the science lab, the writing lab, your kitchen. In that regard, there is nothing special about a maker space. A maker community, however, requires more. A community includes spaces, identities, and an embedded culture. It was with the above brainstorm and galvanizing of language that informed the design of the physical space more than anything else.
Designed to be a flexible creative and creating space, the HIVE will be home to 5 distinctive work areas. Leveraging common language from MVIFI’s own Jim Tiffin, Jr. and the Studio(i) space which is already in action on our school’s Founder’s Campus:
- “Agency” is the workshop space where our community can fabricate their designs with wood tools, a Crawlbot CNC machine, Glowforge laser cutter, and various other material choices.
- “Platform” is our digital creation space with access to 3D printers, vinyl cutter, micro electronics, and workstations for CAD, animation software and more.
- “Joinery” is a common space that fosters collaboration, ideation, and assembly.
- Learning spaces that instigate our community to experiment with their ideas and explore possibilities through the lenses of Art, STEM, or Humanities are located at the center of the space. They are central to not only the space but to the ethos of continual experimentation and seeking of new understandings.
- Flexible space at the entrance to invite inquiry, research and sharing of ideas with both internal and external experts. It is also space to hangout and manifest ideas.
Central to our hopes and dreams for the space is the idea that we are all makers. Especially if we broaden our definition of making to include art, design, writing, etc. To help scaffold that idea for students, we are working on various pathways – not labels – through which student can engage in cross-disciplinary inquiry, experimentation, and fabrication. Students may view their builds in progress through the lenses of:
- Artisans – those who create for beauty;
- Tinkerers – those who create for function;
- Hackers – those who (re)create for a purpose.
Below are some “before” pictures of Bo Adams and I finishing clean up before construction. In January, we look forward to opening the HIVE and continuing the MVIFI design work of building our Maker, Design and Engineering program.