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Maker Unconference 2017

Maker Unconference

March 1, 2017

Hasbrouck Heights Public Library


Topic 1: Build a Better World

Session 1:

Programming Ideas

  • Community outreach with police and fire safety
  • Sciencetellers
  • Tacoma the Wolf (Conservation)
  • Lego Club/Challenges
  • Gardens (plants and flowers)
  • “Veggie-cation”

Session 2:

Recycled Crafts

  • T-shirts (make a t-shirt quilt)
  • Books
  • Bottle Caps

Pine Car Derby Kit ($50.00)

  • Simple assembly
  • Lego options
  • Limit materials for all

Building Challenges

  • Egg Drop
  • Marble Run

Book Clubs

  • “Who is” Book Club

Think outside the box. Look at the community to see who can help.

  • Meet the Mayor at storytime
  • Bob the Reptile Guy
  • NJ Association of Beekeepers
  • Find organizations to make and donate (ie. Operation Gratitude, Project Linus, Color a Smile)

Session 3:

Gardens (indoor / outdoor)

  • Seed library or plant exchange

Butterfly breeding

Build a bird house

Adopt an animal - WWF


Session 4:

Van Saun Zoo

Tenafly Nature Center


Topic 2: Space-less Makers

Sessions 1, 2, 3, 4:

Button machines make great outreach!

Teen volunteers (or Maker Ambassadors) to help operate programs

  • This increases engagement among younger patrons

Buy and use only what you need

Modify programs to incorporate your new maker items

Ask other BCCLS libraries who have done it!

The positives and negatives of Maker Carts

  • Good for heavy equipment and if you have storage space for a cart
  • Bad for building-to-building travel

Making a Mobile Makerspace

  • Use individual items for outreach in schools and adult community groups
  • Some store maker tools in piles, some store maker tools in locked cabinets.
  • Organize your high-tech items ($$$) vs. your low-tech items ($)
    • High-tech items can be kept behind the desk
    • Low-tech items can be stored on bookshelves, cabinets, checked out by patrons, used in passive programs, etc.


Topic 3: Starting Tech from Scratch

Session 1:

Stem-lab stations

  • Re-use Materials
  • No initial skills needed
  • Collaboration with community

Program / Material Ideas:

  • Deconstruction (used electronics)
  • Scratch Coding
  • Minecraft Mods (Education Account)
  • Snapcircuits, Watercolor bot, Roominate, LEGO
  • Donated items

Session 2:

Where to start?

  • Buy shiny objects for promotion tools (3D Printers, Oculus, Google Cardboard)
  • What do you already have? Laptops, iPads, etc.
  • Code with computers, free software, papercrafts, etc.

Free Online Software:

Ask for Donations!!!! This will help you identify what your patrons already spend money on at home.

Snapcircuits, LEGOs, etc.

Session 3:

Hour of Code https://code.org/learn

  • You don't have to learn it yourself!


Tech with lots of applications:

  • Color Mix
  • Snapcircuits
  • Finch robot
  • Ozobots
  • Cameo

Session 4:




Reaching out to tech organizations

Sylvan Learning Center


Topic 4: High Tech vs. Low Tech

Session 1:

Low Tech is more arts and crafts

Cookie Castor website helps make Cookie Cutters for 3D Printers

Tinkercad provides pre-loaded lessons

Hard to get high tech participation on a monthly / weekly basis

MAKE Magazine does a Maker Camp at makercamp.com

Cube Lets

Breakout eou

Try to provide both high and low tech events

Session 2:

High-tech is Scratch, Coding, and Robotics

Low-tech is Sewing and Crafts

Make vs. using

Success and failure

Experiment and try new things

Low-tech includes cooking

Vet your volunteers

SewWhat!.com (website)

Cricut - make a paper roller coaster


Simple machines

Lessons vs. free play/exploration

Collection connection

Signup.com to manage volunteers.

Session 3:

Low-tech is popsicle sticks, straw connectors, collage

High-tech is coding, animation, machines

Intermediate is kite-making, slime, apple volcanoes, egg drops, rocketry, airplane math, pancake art, pine car derby

Where do you start for High-tech?

Coding clubs (teen volunteers)

Use your laptops, iPads, 3D Printer, Cameo, makey-maker

Some software you can use:

  • Pixlr
  • Paint.NET
  • Scratch
  • Stopmotion
  • iMovie
  • Tinkercad

If nothing else, get LED Lights and coin batteries in bulk!

Session 4:

Food (pancakes, waffles, cooking, wafflehouse)

Bring in the community and local businesses

No need for highest tech

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