Saturday, August 31, 2013

Maker Fun at the Farmers' Market

"Glens Falls Farmers' Market" by dmcordell

 A drizzly Saturday morning seemed like the perfect opportunity to visit our weekly Farmers' Market. I bought some fresh vegetables, homemade bread, and a molasses cookie to nibble on.

In addition to produce, flowers, and baked goods, today's market featured a Maker Space. Although the volunteers in charge had never heard the term before, they were happy to embrace the concept and asked me to blog about their efforts.

"Maker space" by dmcordell

 The activity, run by the Warren County 4-H Club and Tri-County Transition Town (a sustainable living group), invited visitors to create upcycled t-shirt bags. Supplies and sewing machines were available, along with free samples and printed instructions (adapted from instructables) for future projects. A fact sheet about plastic bags added to the educational value of the project.

"Facts about plastic bags" by dmcordell

Crafting similar t-shirt bags would be a great classroom activity, marrying creativity with authentic learning. Students could make the bags and tuck information about recycling and environmental issues inside.

Coincidentally, today my Twitter feed linked me to an excellent blog posting, Why the Maker Movement matters to educators, by Sylvia Martinex and Gary Stager. 

Maker spaces are not exclusively about building high tech models. Gather up some t-shirts and let your students sew up a useful product with a socially-responsible twist.

"T-shirt bag" by dmcordell

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