Tinkering School

come make amazing things with us

Day Camp

Wacky Fairgrounds - Day 5 - Week 2 - Mark Day School

Mark Day Fairground, Day Camp, Mark Day/San RafaelTatian GreenleafComment

The moment we've been waiting for has arrived! It's Wacky Fairgrounds project reveal day! The students were excited to show off their hard work but before family members arrived, there was just enough time to put on the finishing touches: wheels on the go kart, feet on the AFFs (animals/furniture/food... we actually didn't end up making any food), and faces on the bowling pins. We were striving to express personality among the AFFs but it was a fun surprise to see the pins take on characteristics as well. 

Both of the builds also needed to be tested before everyone took a ride. We started with a smaller kid on the go kart and progressed to larger kids and even adults. For the carousel, we spun it without riders, then added one student and then another and another until we were up to capacity at 8 student riders.  Even with nine students, there was no creaking or cracking of wood and no sagging or unbalancing of the carefully-designed platform. Success!

Today's work embodied our goals for the week: collaborating and making friends, trying harder than usual, building something bigger than ourselves, and making mistakes and learning from them. At closing circle, our tinkerers shared ways that they had experienced these goals.

Check out many more photos from today and the rest of the week on Flickr.

Clamping a wing in preparation for screwing it down.

Clamping a wing in preparation for screwing it down.

Two people clamping makes for efficient work.

Two people clamping makes for efficient work.

The ramp has good bones.

The ramp has good bones.

Securing a 3.5 foot tall, 8 foot long ramp.

Securing a 3.5 foot tall, 8 foot long ramp.

Two screws in each connection.

Two screws in each connection.

The strongest building shape is a triangle... how many can you count? And the ladder is finally attached!

The strongest building shape is a triangle... how many can you count? And the ladder is finally attached!

The pig gets a handlebar and a face.

The pig gets a handlebar and a face.

Adding a gusset to stabilize the chair. No more wobble!

Adding a gusset to stabilize the chair. No more wobble!

After making angled cuts on the bottom of the 4x4 post to resemble a sharpened pencil, the team lifts it into place on the carousel platform.

After making angled cuts on the bottom of the 4x4 post to resemble a sharpened pencil, the team lifts it into place on the carousel platform.

So much math and tool use (drills, jigsaw, chop saw and more) went into the puzzle piece platform.

So much math and tool use (drills, jigsaw, chop saw and more) went into the puzzle piece platform.

Giant Games - Day 4 - SF Day Camp

Giant Games (2018), San Francisco Day Camp, Day CampBrendon BellComment

Today before jumping into tinkering with our hands, we started with an exercise to define for ourselves "what is tinkering?" and "why do we tinker?" We have some deep thinkers as well as enthusiastic builders this week!

P1120579.JPG

The pinball team made lots of progress both on the support frame and the game board. 

Concentratin and collaboration - they go so well together!

Concentratin and collaboration - they go so well together!

P1120590.JPG

Our tinkerers working on the pinball cart have taken on some exciting engineering challenges, figuring out how to create wheel wells, supports for the axle, and more.

P1120604.JPG
P1030958.JPG

The connect 4 team completed the front and back portions of the giant game grid and learned how to use new tools along the way. 

Sometimes hand tools do the trick! Ava shows off her work using a hacksaw :)

Sometimes hand tools do the trick! Ava shows off her work using a hacksaw :)

There were also some fabulous mistakes made throughout the day! We discovered that when we don't use two hands on the drill its easy to bend the drill bit and it can break off in the wood.  

P1160175.JPG
 To commemorate this exciting mistake, Noah and Trevor made a plaque out of their piece of wood with the embedded drill bit for all to learn from.

 To commemorate this exciting mistake, Noah and Trevor made a plaque out of their piece of wood with the embedded drill bit for all to learn from.

And our crossy road team has been hard at work completing lots of different obstacles including a raised train bridge! 

P1160118.JPG
P1120601.JPG

So many opportunities to practice our cutting and drilling skills.

Tomorrow is our final day of tinkering with this awesome crew. Be sure to check out our final blog post to see how the projects all turn out! To see all our photos from the week, don't forget to visit our Flickr photo page!

Wacky Fairgrounds - Day 4 - Week 2 - Mark Day School

Mark Day Fairground, Mark Day/San Rafael, Day CampDavid St. MartinComment

What is tinkering? Why do we tinker? We started the day with those questions, and we got some insightful answers: "To express creativity," "to discover new ways of thinking," "to make our ideas real." 

Today was our last big day to build and the group came together, on their own, in an impressive way. Perseverance emerged as a theme as the sun got hot in the afternoon, and large unsolved problems loomed with only hours left to build. By the end of the day, we had a working carousel platform, a sturdy go-cart, and a ramp almost ready to be sheeted. Tomorrow will be hard, but not impossible as we prepare for unveil our creations!

 

 

Wacky Fairgrounds - Day 3 - Week 2 - Mark Day School

Mark Day / San Rafael, Day Camp, Mark Day FairgroundTinkering School StaffComment

Happy 4th of July! Today was a day of engineering workshops to get us thinking about building moving parts and leveraging our strength. Everyone learned about levers, pulleys, and how to reinforce wooden joints using triangles and gussets. Then, after lunch, we put our new knowledge into practice.

 
Screen Shot 2018-07-04 at 3.59.27 PM.png
 
DSCF8630.JPG
DSCF8664.JPG
Beth explains how a cross-brace will create two triangles and strengthen an otherwise weak rectangle.

Beth explains how a cross-brace will create two triangles and strengthen an otherwise weak rectangle.

DSCF8638.JPG

We wrestled with questions of how best to build a hot dog, one of several AFFs (Animal/Furniture/Food), to be installed on the carousel platform. Rectangular 2x3 wood doesn't lend itself to circular shapes but we discovered that an octagon is a close approximation.

Hot dog in the making... we label our cut pieces with inch measurements.

Hot dog in the making... we label our cut pieces with inch measurements.

One of our AFFs, the wacky giraffe, is taking on even more of a personality now that it has a moveable head and pull strings.

One of our AFFs, the wacky giraffe, is taking on even more of a personality now that it has a moveable head and pull strings.

The carousel platform folks have been trying harder than usual and discussing a complex design that rivals a tangram puzzle. 

DSCF8735.JPG

The bowl dozer / bowler coaster folks have been hard at work teaming up to build a ladder and a railing for the top of the launch platform.

IMG_5217.JPG
IMG_5222.JPG
P7047269.JPG

Today was also a day of collaborating and making friends. At closing circle, several tinkerers shared how they had made a new friend today.

Click through the slideshow below for more photos.

Tinkering School is a trademark registered in the US Patent and Trademark Office.