Tinkering School

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Carnival (Fall 2018)

Carnival - Week 7-8 - Boys & Girls Clubs - Mission Clubhouse

Carnival (Fall 2018), B&GClub - M (Fall 2018)Julie PeriComment

It’s the final count down to the big night of the carnival! Both teams worked with focus and persistence to have their rides finished in time for everyone to get to try them out and show off their accomplishments to their guests.

Katie and Jasmine made sure to stay safe in the chopsaw room even in the midst of the growing excitement.

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Zadrien and Wallace worked as a team to finish attaching the rear supports on the gravitron, while Joshua and David worked together to cut the paneling that covered the supports.

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Team work was ESSENTIAL these last weeks to accomplish everything the team wanted to build. Wallace and Zadrien, Joshua and David, and Liana and Joanna all split into pairs and took on a necessary role in this last week. They all persisted through wonderful mistakes and occasional frustrations to finish adding on the needed structural safety bracing for riding the gravitron.

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Over on the rocket side, Brendon worked with Ailee and Amanda to finish attaching the rear wall to one of the rockets.

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While Narett, Jasmine and Katie added the back paneling on the other rocket. Again both teams split into two groups to accomplish more together.

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Then, before we all knew it, the 8th week was upon us and it was Carnival night! We put out the lights, wrote up welcome signs, made tickets and did a last few additions before testing our creations.

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Annie and Brendon added the last few screws to the trap door, while Ailee added on a roof.

Annie was a little nervous using the drill, so Brendon offered a partner push.

Annie was a little nervous using the drill, so Brendon offered a partner push.

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Jasmine and Yareth worked on adding rocket jets and making fire come out of them.

Jasmine and Yareth worked on adding rocket jets and making fire come out of them.

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Joshua and Wallace added pin-wheels while Zadrien and Liana drilled down the ball catching buckets on each seat.

Then finally it was time! As per Tinkering School tradition, the adult collaborators safety tested each ride before the younger tinkerers climbed aboard. First to test were the rockets. Omar and Katie went in first, both with helmets, and…the rockets worked!

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Quickly to follow after were the tinkerers themselves.

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Then it was time for the gravitron. We went over the safety rules we had agreed to and after a preliminary test for structural safety…we let it rip! While the gravitron spun around, the riders would hold onto the buckets for stability while other kids tried to throw balls into them. All kids (young and old) had a blast!

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Super speed!

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This session was a total success and everyone accomplished so much! To see all the fun from these past eight weeks check out our Flickr page for more photos!

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Carnival - Week 6 - Boys & Girls Clubs - Mission Clubhouse

B&GClub - M (Fall 2018), Carnival (Fall 2018)Julie PeriComment

It’s week six already! The “Gravitron” and “Rocket” teams are making speedy progress. Soon our carnival rides will be spinning and swinging!

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Joana and David worked on attaching the flooring and the walls. David used the jig saw to cut out the tracing of the flooring that he drew while Joana added cross supports.

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Working on the gravitron required everyone’s focus and attention. After attaching the flooring, Wallace and Diego began to make pilot holes for where the outer wheels will attach to the gravitron. Wallace points to his hole to show Diego where to put his.

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The Rocket Swing team subdivided into two smaller teams to get our rockets closer to blast off! Naret, Yareth, and Jazmine worked on drilling holes for ropes to lift the rockets up off the ground. They also attached wooden supports for what will soon be the side rails to the rocket swings.

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Yareth and Naret added supports for the rocket swing railing.

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Ailey got creative and attached PVC pipe to the frame of one of the Rocket Swings.

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It’s decoration time! Annie used masking tape, markers, and cellophane to give the rocket some flare, while Amanda experimented with materials for the windows and walls.

Check back in next week to see the Gravitron and Rocket Swings in action!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/tinkeringschool/albums/72157695964261670

Carnival - Week 5 - Boys & Girls Clubs - Mission Clubhouse

B&GClub - M (Winter 2018), Carnival (Fall 2018)Brendon BellComment

Are you ready to get dizzy!? The Mission clubhouse teams made lots of progress on their spinning gravitron as well as their rocket ship swings!

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To make sure the gravitron doesn’t spin itself apart, the team decided it would be good to add some cross supports. The task provided an excellent opportunity to practice using clamps.

WHOOO! It spins!

WHOOO! It spins!

One of the rocket ship crews was able to cut out their bottom hatch. They chose a square instead of a circle to distinguish their rocket from the other crew’s.

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Amanda and Joanna are now pros at using the jig saw. It’s so great to see kids quickly become proficient and comfortable using power tools. All that’s required is a little encouragement and lots of opportunities to practice!

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The circle hatch rocket team was able to successfully finish attaching their floor to the frame.

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After standing on it and testing its strength, the team discovered that they needed to cut and attach some more cross supports to prevent the floor from bending underfoot.

With a few more weeks to go in the session, the carnival rides are quickly approaching test riding time… so exciting! Stay tuned to see the kids hard at work next week and in the meantime visit our Flickr page to check out more of the tinkering action!

Carnival - Weeks 2-4 - Boys & Girls Clubs - Mission Clubhouse

B&GClub - M (Fall 2018), Carnival (Fall 2018)Brendon BellComment

Step right up, step right up! You are in store for the most elaborate, the most exciting, the most inspiring event this side of the Mississippi. That’s right…it’s Tinkering School “Carnival Edition!”

This fall, the Mission Clubhouse will be building carnival rides - whoohoooo! which was pretty much the kids’ exact sentiments after Julie shared the design challenge :-)

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We split up into two groups and started drawing our individual design ideas. The design constraints this fall are to build one ride that spins, and one ride that swings. Annie and Amanda worked diligently on their design for the swinging ride.

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After completing the individual drawings, everyone shared their ideas with their project groups and then incorporated all of them into two big designs.

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Finally it was time to collect materials, measure, and begin cutting and attaching!

Omar provided an excellent vertical reference for how tall a roof might need to be.

Omar provided an excellent vertical reference for how tall a roof might need to be.

Over the course of week 2-4 of our Tinkering session, the kids have had many opportunities to practice their building skills. It’s so great to see their confidence and comfort growing as they use large power tools, even ones that intimidated them initially like the chop saw!

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The spinning team came up with an awesome idea to build a “gravitron” (think of a big merry-go-round where the kids get plastered to the walls by the g-forces as they spin around). We’ll see how nausea inducing the ride ends up becoming…

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The tinkerers started out by creating a giant weblike frame structure that will support the floor and walls. The “legs” were sandwiched by two round plywood disks for extra support and to provide a place for an axle to go through.

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And “voila!” look how much they accomplished! They even attached caster wheels to the outside edge of each of the legs so the whole structure could spin. It worked!

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The swinging team also came up with a super exciting idea to have two rockets with riders sitting in them swing past each as if they were attached to the end of some giant scissors. With their plans in hand, they got straight to work cutting out frames and floor panels.

Naret was excited to use a jig saw for the first time! She and Jasmine cut out a circle hatch out of the floor for riders to enter the rocket through.

Naret was excited to use a jig saw for the first time! She and Jasmine cut out a circle hatch out of the floor for riders to enter the rocket through.

It lined up perfectly!

It lined up perfectly!

Jig saws can only cut by moving forward, not down. Rather than cutting a line to reach the circle outline, Jasmine used a large drill bit to cut a hole in middle of the plywood. That way the jig saw had a space for the blade to start from.

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Amanda and Annie worked on constructing the frame for the second rocket. Such amazing teamwork!

Amanda and Annie worked on constructing the frame for the second rocket. Such amazing teamwork!

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Everyone in the team took turns trying out the jig saw. It was the first time using one for many of our young tinkerers. After their initial nervousness, it was awesome to hear several exclamations of “that was fun!” Its a joy for all of us as collaborators to see the lightbulb switch on for so many kids as they realize they are capable of using real tools to build amazing things they never dreamed they could make before.

It’s been a blast having the Mission clubhouse crew with us again and we can’t wait to see their progress next week! To see photos from the all the sessions so far, please visit our Flickr page. Stay tuned for more epic tinkering next week!

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