Makerspace: Let's Make Something

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Makerspace:  Let’s Make Something!

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Makerspace at SouthwestAbout Makerspaces | Makerspace At Home | Makerspace Equipment | Safety

Our Makerspace provides a place for crafters, inventors, tinkerers, makers, and Do-It-Yourselfers to work and create. We provide a variety of opportunities for patrons including formal and informal programming on STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) topics. There are also “Open Makerspace” hours when anyone can request to use the equipment.

The Warren County Library hosts a Makerspace at the Southwest Branch, located at 404 Route 519, Stewartsville, NJ. The Makerspace is open during regular library hours unless a program is in session in the room. The Makerspace is available to anyone using the library, but it cannot be used for private groups or reserved for outside programs. For questions about the Makerspace, please contact our Makerspace Coordinator, Sandra Roberts at sroberts@warrenlib.org or (908) 689-7922.

 


About Makerspaces

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What is a makerspace?  Makerspaces are places in communities where people come together to make, create, invent, explore new technologies, share resources, and learn.  Special events throughout the country, and indeed all over the world, (such as Maker Faires and the White House Maker Faire) have raised awareness of the importance of making.  In June 2014, President Obama hosted the first-ever White House Maker Faire and issued a call to create a “Nation of Makers” and asked “every company, every college, every community, every citizen joins us as we lift up makers and builders and doers across the country.”

Why is making important? Making is hands-on learning which supports STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) education. Maker activities can inspire more people to pursue careers in design, manufacturing, and possibly take their creations to the next level and become entrepreneurs. Making is also about repairing, repurposing, and creating which, in addition to being personally satisfying and environmentally responsible, has the potential to lead to small business opportunities.     

Why do libraries support the maker movement? Making is providing information and learning opportunities for people of all ages---something libraries have always done. By providing resources  (computers with specialized software and hardware such as 3D printers, laser cutters, and sewing machines) paired with training opportunities, we can democratize the tools and skills necessary to design and make. Library Makerspaces are community resources that provide the opportunity for sharing skills and knowledge in an environment that is open to all.    

Making is already a library tradition. Our programs provide intergenerational opportunities to explore new craft ideas and traditional skills such as knitting, crocheting, quilting, and weaving. Craft carts and provide the opportunity for kids to create, while Lego and Minecraft clubs provide opportunities to build in the real and virtual world.  We partner with United Astronomy Club of New Jersey to hold Astronomy Days where people can learn about space and use a real telescope to view the sky; with Radical Rocketeers who hold monthly workshops on building and launching rockets and Stone Soup Symphony who encourage the love of music and making with their build-a –musical- instrument workshop.  We offer museum passes, a seed library and even violins (all donated) to encourage library members to learn by means other than books. 


The Makerspace At Home

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With the library closed due to COVID-19, access to our Makerspace is closed as well and much of our Makerspace programming is on hold as well. However, that doesn't mean you can't still have maker fun at home! We presently have two online video series each week that feature maker and STEAM projects using materials from around your home. You can view Maker Monday and Friday STEAM through our Facebook page or on YouTube.

About Maker Monday: Makers are people that love to create, innovate, and make the world a better place. Join us online for Maker Monday at 2 pm each week as our Makerspace Coordinator, Sandy Roberts, shares a new project you can make from items around your house. 

About Friday STEAM: Put your thinking caps on and explore the world of S.T.E.A.M -- Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math. Each week our Makerspace Coordinator, Sandy Roberts, will share a short workshop and project.


This summer, we'll be adding even more Makerspace online programming including coding classes, TREP$, and Maker Camp. Please check our calendar regularly to see the most recent offerings.


Makerspace Equipment

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The following items are available at all times when the Makerspace is open. All Makerspace items MUST remain in the Makerspace at all times.
 
Legos Lincoln Logs K'Nex
Magna-tiles Stik Bots Snap Circuits
littleBits Play-Doh Assorted small figures
Watercolor paints Paintbrushes Markers
Colored pencils Crayons Oil pastels
Scissors Rulers Assorted tape
Assorted glue Assorted paper Origami paper
 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
These items are available during "Open Makerspace Hours" when the Makerspace Coordinator is available. Please check our calendar for times. All Makerspace items MUST remain in the Makerspace at all times. Patrons are advised to contact the Makerspace Coordinator at least 24 hours in advance if they would like to use the equipment below. We cannot guarantee that all equipment will be available at all times. Please note, you may be asked to sign a liability waiver to use some equipment.
 
Laptop computers iPads HTC Vive VR
Makey Makey micro:bit Arduino Uno
Raspberry Pi Additional SnapCircuits Additional littleBits
Squishy Circuits Large Green Screen Professional Lighting
Projector Sewing Machine Ellison Die Cutter & Dies
Silhouette Cameo Cricut Expression 2 Sissix Die Cutter & Dies
Google Cardboard VR Assorted Hand Tools Soldering Irons
Sewing Supplies Knitting Supplies Crochet Supplies
Rubber Stamps & Ink Leather Stamping Supplies Basic Podcasting Equipment
Cordless Drill Rotary Drill Heat Gun
 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Safety

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Please note that the Makerspace is not childproofed for young children. Parents are responsible for their child's safety. Children under 8 years of age must have a parent or guardian with them in the Makerspace at all times. The Makerspace Coordinator and library staff reserve the right to limit or restrict access to the Makerspace and its equipment as deemed appropriate or to protect the safety of our patrons.

Makerspace Safety Rules
The following rules are for your safety and protection: 

  • Follow all instructions to the best of your ability. 
  • No open toe shoes are to be worn in the Makerspace. Closed-toe shoes are to be worn at all times. 
  • No eating or drinking in the Makerspace. 
  • No smoking. 
  • No leaning on or standing on tables. No moving tables without permission. 
  • No kneeling or standing on stools. 
  • No pets. 
  • No infants or toddlers. The Makerspace is not considered child safe. 
  • Goggles, gloves, and other safety equipment must be worn as instructed. 
  • No running, yelling, or rough-housing of any kind. 
  • Work area must be cleaned up when you are done with activities. 
  • All tools must be used safely and for the purpose for which they were designed.  
  • You must have permission to use any tools and equipment. 
  • Materials are to be used as instructed and not wasted unnecessarily. 
  • Do not harass, insult, or intimidate others.