Turning Students Into Makers

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Children's Museum of Pittsburgh
Children's Museum of Pittsburgh

People are getting more and more into making things. From the White House to the coast of Australia, there’s excitement about opening up access to high-tech tools that can give physical shape to new ideas. And the maker movement is changing education as well, because making is a terrific way to learn.

This is why we’re so excited about our new partnership with Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, which is helping Pittsburgh-area schools run Kickstarter projects to fund their own makerspaces — a program that the museum wants to turn into a national model. It’s the first time we’ve supported a program like this.

With input from our team, ten schools and districts launched projects this week, looking to raise about $100,000 in total. The Burgettstown Area School District, for instance, wants to bring cutting-edge tools to a rural area where they’ve never been available, and the Pittsburgh Lincoln PreK-5 public school wants to transform an outdoor space into a maker-centered learning zone. You can see the full list of projects here. Pittsburgh has a long history of making and innovation, so it makes perfect sense as a testbed for a new approach to funding these kinds of educational resources.

Since we added a subcategory for makerspaces last summer, we’ve seen it fill up with great projects from Massachusetts, Virginia, Georgia, and far beyond. But we’re especially excited by the idea of students having access to makerspaces right inside their own schools. When we became a Benefit Corporation this month, we put the advancement of social good at the core of our company goals. And these projects from Pittsburgh are our kind of social good. They’re all about giving students the tools they need to start tinkering, hacking, and creating.

Join the movement by supporting these projects! Better still, take a look at your own local schools, and the future makers somewhere inside them — do they have the resources they need?

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