Tinkering School

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Session E - Day 1 - New Friends, New Skills

Tinkering School Staff5 Comments

It's another week at Tinkering School! We've got new faces, new personalities, and (most importantly) a refreshed staff who were pumped to meet everyone and get down to business with an opening circle discussion on what Tinkering School is, and how to safely tinker. 

Upon everyone arriving, we set out some wheels, batteries, motors, and markers so that everyone could start to get to know each other and make some good connections (with motors and with people I mean).

Morgan tinkers with ball bearings, and Laila attaches battery wires to a wooden chassis piece.

Morgan tinkers with ball bearings, and Laila attaches battery wires to a wooden chassis piece.

We then shifted into opening circle where we discussed the three rules of Tinkering School, and the unspoken 6th rule (you're not allowed to know unless you come to camp).

Kaitlyn accurately explains a rule one: don't hurt yourself or anyone else!

Kaitlyn accurately explains a rule one: don't hurt yourself or anyone else!

Gever shows a simple way to resolve almost all small conflicts: ro-sham-bo!

Gever shows a simple way to resolve almost all small conflicts: ro-sham-bo!

After circle, we walked up the hill to the build site for tool training! Everyone was trained on the three main tools we use here at Tinkering School, drills, clamps, and chop saw. Aside from just the tools, we also had an amenities tour of the build area. Campers were split up into four groups and rotated out of each training so that everyone learned all the same things.

Above is a photo of our shop! Totally decked out with various saws, adhesives, cords, drills, and fasteners, this is the place where extravagant ideas are created out of extravagant materials. But before any of that can happen, we have to learn how to use the tools to do so.

Clamp training starts with a familiarization of tools and materials to prepare for Liora's radical clamp challenge.

Clamp training starts with a familiarization of tools and materials to prepare for Liora's radical clamp challenge.

One of our collaborators, Liora, gave Johnny, Isabella, Eisen, and Matthew a clamp challenge to clamp together a bench that she could sit on, without breaking. This challenge was very much accepted.

Even though they may have not gotten it on the first try!

Meanwhile, Frannie trained some other campers on our drills. 

Frannie asks Johnny, Matthew, Eisen, and Isabella to repeat her actions after she drills a hole and switches bits to drive in a screw.

Frannie asks Johnny, Matthew, Eisen, and Isabella to repeat her actions after she drills a hole and switches bits to drive in a screw.

Over in chop saw central, Kaitlyn and Onion practice chopping wood and keeping fingers out of the blood bubble!

And finally, Daniel showed his groups around the build site so that everyone knew where important things like the bathroom, water fountain, and fresh blackberries were.

Daniel also explained to Max why screws on the ground, are called dead baby goats.

Max was confused.

Finally, after a long day of meeting new folks and learning to use tools, we ran down the hill for a yummy lasagna dinner, cooked by our undercover chef, Agent P. And finally, after some pool noodle jousting, we settled in for hot cocoa (with extra marshmallows). 

With tinkerer bed time approaching, there is just one question left. What are we going to be doing for the next two weeks...

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