Tinkering School

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New Year Count Down! - Winter Break Day 1

Count Down to 2017Amanda SimonsComment

Today was Day 1 of a 3-Day Winter Break Camp here at Tinkering School. This Break Camp is unique because we will have an entirely new group of humans EACH DAY, but the project for all three days is going to remain the same. The folks who showed up on Day 1 were able to lay the foundation of the project -- they designed and started the whole ordeal, only to leave the rest of the week's Tinkerers to learn about and add on to an existing structure throughout the week. 

Winter Break Camp Day 2

Iditarod Winter 2016Caroline ScanlanComment

You always need to make a PLAN!

On Tuesdays, we start our day with a design meeting in our building groups. We brainstorm ideas, develops plans, and make cut lists for the chop saw room. This is an important part of our morning ritual, as it gets all tinkerers on the same page and ready to collaborate for the rest of the day. 

Thanksgiving Break Camp - Day 3

Frannie DiBonaComment

Today was a day full of great alterations and great successes, the perfect way to end this three day workshop! Our giant's "food cube" got a revamp to the "food cone" and the mouth got some serious accessories. A full spread of thanksgiving food was also created for our giant.

Spring Break Camp 2016 - Day 4

Spring Illusions 2016Lindsay JonesComment
Ella uses a hand saw to cut a specialty piece.

Ella uses a hand saw to cut a specialty piece.

Today was about details!

Alex connects the ramp sides together.

Alex connects the ramp sides together.

The Escher Stair team started and finished ramps today, with complicated angles.  

We measure fabric to see if there is enough to cover all of the walls.

We measure fabric to see if there is enough to cover all of the walls.

The Magic Grow Room team had to figure out what kind of material to use to sheath the wall frames with. We measured plywood, paper and then fabric and decided to use the fabric because there was a lot of it and it was silky.

Cecile records the dimensions of the fabric.

Cecile records the dimensions of the fabric.

Clarise snips a hole in the fabric so the screws don't get tangled in it!

Clarise snips a hole in the fabric so the screws don't get tangled in it!

The fabric is super tricky to use, so the kids had to be very careful while attaching it.  They formed teams to cut a hole in the right spot and then drill a hole without twisting the fabric into the drill. Then assemble a washer and screw pair to secure the fabric in place. phew!

The Magic Carpet's magic starts to appear!

The Magic Carpet's magic starts to appear!

The Magic Carpet started some beautiful pattern artwork on the carpet they sewed!

Spring Break Camp 2016 - Day 3

Spring Illusions 2016Lindsay JonesComment
Alex does some upside down assembly.

Alex does some upside down assembly.

Pascal and Ella make supports together.

Pascal and Ella make supports together.

Anton, Ryan and Ryan attach plywood sides to the box they finished framing!

Anton, Ryan and Ryan attach plywood sides to the box they finished framing!

Gautam, Alex and Lana put leg supports on their stairway!

Gautam, Alex and Lana put leg supports on their stairway!

Today the tinkerers ooooooozed confidence.  Everywhere we looked there were small teams of kids working on projects without any need of an adult.  These kids knew what they were working on, what needed to get done, and how to do it.

Ayden and Eli finish framing the Fruit Stand.

Ayden and Eli finish framing the Fruit Stand.

They had so much confidence that they decided that something new needed to be built.

And then they built it.

The Magic Carpet had a crew working on a crate of fruit inspired from the market scene in the movie Aladdin. The kids decided it didn't really make sense to have a random fruit crate laying around, so there needed to be a Fruit Stand.

Ayden shows Eli how to put the finish washer and screws together to attach the awning.

Ayden shows Eli how to put the finish washer and screws together to attach the awning.

Ayden has been a great partner to other tinkerers and giving demos on how to install new hardware to his group. Today he took lead on this Fruit Stand and with the help from other kids, who trickled in from other groups through-out the day, they conceived of and finished it!

When they were ready to add walls to the frame, instead of waiting around for a Collaborator to be available to supervise them on the Band Saw, they found scraps that fit their needs and used those instead.

A sign from a long ago project named the creation the "Red Band Fruit Stand". More tinkerers were drawn over by the creative buzz of Kid Power and started organizing what kinds of snacks and drinks they could bring from home to stock the Fruit Stand.  They decided they could donate provisions to sell, so they could donate to Tinkering School.

And look at this Amazing Fruit Crate!!!

Spring Break Camp 2016 - Day 2

Spring Illusions 2016Lindsay JonesComment
Maelys builds iteration 2 of our magic grow room prototype.

Maelys builds iteration 2 of our magic grow room prototype.

Tuesdays are when we get ourselves into gear. Monday left us all revved up and ready to go, but we still need some practice with the drills and to make real plans for what we are really going to build.

Gautam and Zach clamp and attach pieces of the stairs they are making.

Gautam and Zach clamp and attach pieces of the stairs they are making.

The Escher Stairway decided to wrap their minds around regular stairs, before they tried to get really crazy. They began to build a stairway based on the models around our space.

Magic Carpet prototype!

Magic Carpet prototype!

The Magic Carpet team began some prototyping for the illusion part of their project, while others began making things to distract you!

Alex measures the angles of one side of the stairs.

Alex measures the angles of one side of the stairs.

The Stair Team finished two halves of the supports and then compared them to see if they would match up.

Alex declares, "NOT GOOD ENOUGH."

Alex declares, "NOT GOOD ENOUGH."

The kids decided that the first attempt wasn't up to snuff and they should correct their angles.  Having them observe and decide on their own that the project should be improved is so great and it also gives them more opportunities to practice their tool skills!

Clarice and Lana show us how big the chair is actually going to be. Whoa.

Clarice and Lana show us how big the chair is actually going to be. Whoa.

The Magic Grow Room team had some kids working on furniture for inside the room and some prototyping the room itself, with kids deciding for themselves if they felt like building or hard thinking. They communicated with each other, so that there was always a few brains and hands on each team.

 

By the end of the day things were definitely coming together.

Spring Break Camp 2016 - Day 1

Spring Illusions 2016Lindsay JonesComment
Odessa and Zachary help each other make a Clampamajig

Odessa and Zachary help each other make a Clampamajig

Pascal and Ayden worked together in drill training to make an arrow!

Pascal and Ayden worked together in drill training to make an arrow!

Ryan practices his chop-saw technique.

Ryan practices his chop-saw technique.

We started off this week with basic tool training on the drills, chopsaw, and clamps. What can't you do with those tools and a group of friends?!  After the kids spent the whole morning learning how to use 3 new tools and each others names they went off to play at the park. 

Caroline challenges our brainz

Caroline challenges our brainz

When the kids get back from the park they STILL DON'T KNOW what the project is!!!! Instead of telling us the theme of the week right away, Caroline asked us if we thought she could cut a hole in a piece of paper that she could fit her whole body through.

"No way."

Caroline blows our minds.

Caroline blows our minds.

We then watched Caroline make several small cuts in her paper until she opened it to reveal a ring of paper big enough that she could fit her whole body through! She showed us how our brains are used to assuming how things work and therefore how easy it is to trick them!

This week's theme is inspired by Friday: April Fool's day and we are going to try our hardest to create optical illusions to trick our families eyes and minds on Friday!  The projects so far are: a Flying Carpet, an Escher Stairway, and a Magic Grow Room.

We spent the afternoon designing...

Prototyping...

Brainstorming with wood...

Exploring materials...

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And helping out our team mates.

Because of the explicit trickery in this week's projects, we started out with some deep, deep thinking about perspective, vanishing points, eyeballs, and squid camouflage.  These kids are super committed to making things look and work right this week and we are excited to see them already focussing harder and planning their iterations!

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