Maker spaces are creative, self-directed learning spaces where students can create, invent and learn. Sylvia Martinez states: 'The Maker Movement is a revolutionary global collaboration of people learning to solve problems with modern tools and technology'. In a maker environment, students have the opportunity to become involved with collaborative hands-on projects that promote multidisciplinary thinking and learning. Students can tinker, explore, discover and create new things using a variety of tools and materials. The spaces are often filled with computers, 3D printers, electronics, craft supplies, tools and recycled materials. Maker spaces are unique and might focus on electronics, robotics, woodwork, sewing, programming or a combination of these skills.
In schools, maker spaces exist in three different forms: as dedicated spaces, distributed spaces or mobile spaces. For further information about these three types, visit How to create a 'Maker' space at your school.
CMK Futures (2017). 'Professional development'. Online resource: http://inventtolearn.com/workshops
Department of Education and Training Victoria (2016). 'Making'
What could you find in a maker space?
In a maker space you might find some of the following resources:
3D printers, laser cutters
power tools, hand tools (eg scissors, pliers), adhesives
computers, robotic equipment, Arduino boards, Makey Makey, littleBits
recycled materials, old devices
craft and art supplies
electronic parts and tools.
'Maker' space shopping list is a detailed list of resources that could be included in a maker space.
How to teach it
Students explore aspects of animal adaptation prior to applying their knowledge to construct their own digital creature using littleBits electronic sets.
What other schools are doing
Two students talk about their learning experiences when designing, producing and testing their Makey Makey.
This case study highlights how to build aspects of the Digital Technologies curriculum into the school’s library Makerspace.
This program support students to become deep thinkers and problem-solvers as they learn through tinkering and making.
In this competition, students develop a technology project of their choice and then present it to a panel of judges. Projects are submitted in two categories: years 3–6 or years 7–12.
Students get their team together to design, build, and program a robot; then drive it to compete against robots created by other teams. Suggested ages: 14–18 years.
Students work as a team to program robots to compete against others in a game of soccer, a dance routine, or a rescue mission.
Students use robotics and technology to explore STEM in a range of competitive events, workshops, camps and conferences