Training & Treehouses

The tool training for Kelly Weininger’s Shark Tank went great.

The students’ comfort level with the tools now was readily apparent when, on the following day, they were busy making things rather than at a standstill asking questions about a tool.  Also by having them get familiar with the tools, I think their minds were already working on  how they will build their first prototype.  The big improvement with this training method was with safety.  Instead of running from student to student demonstrating how to use tools, the preemptive training allowed the teachers and the lab coordinators to readily seek out and remove safety issues.

Mr. Mackey’s prints on wood and in the rubber stamps came out well.  It was great using a new material to further extend the usefulness of the laser cutter.  The students were impressed with the capabilities, however, at this time, students are still not allowed to use it unsupervised.  Something to consider is how we can better streamline projects that have a whole class or multiple classes use the laser cutter, and eliminate the proverbial bottleneck with the teacher.
Also, something that is not happening in the lab yet, but did garner some excitement, is that the first year of the Art and Architecture class is finally underway.  Last week they visited their site at Truly Living Well’s new farm in Collegetown.  Through the year they will be learning about architecture and design, with it all culminating with a design and build of an actual treehouse by year’s end.  Last Friday, they were able to meet the client and start to get inspired about what to build.  The students have a ways to go, but in this journey they will be using the STEAM lab for fabrication…more to come…
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