Tinkering School

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Donkey (Fall 2015)

"The Search for Eeyore's Tail Continues"

Donkey (Fall 2015)Rachel EconomyComment

The great thing about Eeyore- well, one of the great things about Eeyore- is how many smaller sub-projects and opportunities for tinkering he has given us.

For example, we had to figure out how to attached the variously oriented pieces of our semi-sculptural (but turnable!) donkey head, in which many of the wood layers became too thick for our longest screws. Tinkerers literally turned their thinking upside down to figure out ways to hold Eeyore's head together.

Tinkerers also worked on a really fun, intricate mechanism to make wheels with moving legs attached- here is Marabelle figuring out how to cut a circular shape on the bandsaw. 

A lot of reconsidering of designs, changes, and super interesting mistakes helped us along the way, especially with the help of these tinkerers really supportive and persistent attitudes in the face of challenges or unexpected difficulty.

Learning from tinkerers ideas how to safely cut and drill pieces that seem way too small for a saw or drill has been one of my favorite learning experiences during this project. 

Today, we'll try to tinker with the tail and put everything together!

"In Which Eeyore Loses a Tail (And We Build One)" Week 1 TSAS Fall 2015

Donkey (Fall 2015)Rachel EconomyComment

After some excellent clamping, drilling, and chopping with a saw...

...several stellar instances of teamwork, and going above and beyond...

...we settled in to explore the Hundred Acre Wood. And what we found out was that Eeyore, Winnie the Pooh's dear friend, had lost his tail. By the end of the story, Eeyore had found his tail with the help of his friends, and we had found our tinkering challenge: to build an Eyeore complete with detachable, moveable tail.

Ongoing design and discussions have included additional thoughts on making the Eeyore moveable, drivable, and inhabitable (briefly) by a small human. We'll keep you posted on the progress of our slightly gloomy friend. 

"Stuffie's Great Adventure!" Week 1

Donkey (Fall 2015)Rachel EconomyComment

Our Senior After School crew started their first week off strong with tool practice and instant collaboration.

But while they were busy building a clamp bridge...

...and practicing the chop saw...

...strange forces were at work in the universe. And so, when we arrived on Wednesday, we found a strange, lost little alien in our shop.

Though somewhat shy, the alien has taken a liking to Evan, and has informed Evan that our new alien-friend's name is Sauron, that he is severely allergic to human touch, and that he would like to get from his current position on the shop floor to a high bridge in the rafters in order to get the lay of the land on our strange planet. 

And so we set out to design a machine or structure that could accomplish the task.

After a few rounds of discussion, some friendly debate about just how allergic the alien is to people, and one of the most diverse lists of testable ideas I've ever seen for a single design here at Tinkering School, we decided that for our first attempt, we would try to build a pulley-based elevator-bucket-picker-upper to get Saur0n to the bridge. In the coming week, we'll be building, testing, and tinkering, in an effort to help our extra-terrestrial friend.  

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