Every Child a Maker

Earlier this year at the White House Science Fair, President Obama met Joey Hudy, a 14-year-old who developed the “extreme marshmallow cannon” capable of projecting a marshmallow 175 feet. Joey handed the president one of his business cards, which stated simply, “Don’t Be Bored, Make Something.”Joey is a self-described “Maker,” part of a growing community of young people and adults who are designing and building things on their own time. About 120,000 people participated in the May 2012 Maker Faire in San Mateo, Calif., sharing projects such as a flame-powered pipe organ, a fully automated ragtime band, and a 12-foot-tall aluminum robotic face controlled by 12 joysticks. Sixty “mini-Maker Faires” are planned this year alone.

President Obama believes we need to give more young people the ability to be makers like Joey. As the president said at the launch of his Educate To Innovate campaign to improve science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, "I want us all to think about new and creative ways to engage young people in science and engineering, whether it's science festivals, robotics competitions, fairs that encourage young people to create and build and invent—to be makers of things, not just consumers of things."

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What are Makerspaces?

Makerspaces (also known as Hackerspaces, Creative Spaces, Fab Labs, Makelabs and in California - Makerhoods), according to Wikipedia,  are open community labs where members with common interests (e.g., engineering, computer programming, inventing, graphic design, etc.) gather to share resources, knowledge, career networking and build new devices.  Generally, makerspaces are designed to meet the following needs:

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