Top 10 FREE At-Home Resources for Making, STEM, and PBL
If you are at home like most parents or teachers, you could probably use a few extra ideas to help your kids and students engage in meaningful educational experiences. For this reason, our team at 1st Maker Space has compiled a list of 10 resources that can be used by teachers and parents alike. These resources cover a variety of topics including making, 3D printing, coding, and even environmental sustainability!
1: Design It Make It by TPFY
TechPoint Foundation for Youth features a Design it Make it Challenge that culminates in Tinkerfest in August (similar to a MakerFaire). This year's challenge is centered on finding a solution to global food shortages by creating a new way to grow or transport food in a sustainable way. The challenge this year is an at-home challenge and is for students K-12. Best of all, there is no fee to enter and participants can use stuff around the house or even apply for a $25 grant for additional supplies. 1st Maker Space is sponsoring the challenge this year, and the winner in each category will win cool prizes like a 3Doodler pen!
Wonder Workshop has an Educator and Home Learning Toolkit to help teachers and parents bridge the digital divide. The toolkit contains free Blockly printables as well as coloring pages and other fun resources. No robots necessary. Have a dash robot and want to learn how to use it this summer? Wonder Workshop is also offering educator Dash and Dot Course through June 30, 2020 - regularly a $200 value!
Learning in the Making: LIVE! is an online video series designed to support educators and families with accessible hands-on learning experiences by MakerEd, a thought-leader in the maker community. The previous video, which is archived on their website, features a how-to guide for using old socks to make sock-puppets.
If you're interested in learning about 3D modeling or 3D printing, Tinkercad is a great resource to get started. Not only does this website offer free online modeling software that is simple and intuitive, but it also provides easy to use online simulation to build circuits. Check out their Making at Home series for a new twist on how to use those extra toilet paper rolls.
Looking for a community of parents, teachers, and students interested in sharing at home activities focused on making and STEM? Check out the public group CoBuild19 on Facebook. New challenges are announced weekly.
If you're a maker looking for new projects to work on, or need some direction getting started, check out Instructables. Their website includes projects in circuits, furniture building, and fun artistic crafting ideas. In addition, Instructable provides courses on 3D printing and CNC.
If you are looking for something that is academically challenging, check out one of Harvard’s courses currently being offered online. Many of them are free! Most courses culminate in a certificate and are self-paced.
If you're into Micro:Bits, there are challenges available on their website that include lesson plans. These projects are great for learning how to get started with coding. The Make Code Online Platform has a simulator, so no Micro:bit is needed to take advantage of this resource, although it certainly makes it more fun!
Looking for a platform to collaborate on a coding project with other people? Check out Github. You can create a project and invite people to work on it with you, or you can use someone else's project design to create your own version and continue to build off of open source material.
10: Make Magazine
Last on our list, but certainly not least, is Make Magazine. This website has what seems like an endless number of great ideas on new projects to start making. Each project has a difficulty rating as well as a duration estimate. Project span from DIY sanitation cabinets, coffee roasters, swarmbot, and even hands-free photography foot plates.
If you have a resource that you love to use centered on STEM Education that we missed tweet us @1stmakerspace on Twitter! #MakersGonnaMake