Term 2 Prep to Year 3 Makerspace Gets Creative

Last term’s Prep to Year 3 Makerspace After School Program allowed for seven weeks of discovery and creation. Being project-based, we developed our fine motor skills while exploring the concepts of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics. We created seven different projects, each week of the Term 2 program.

The term started off by making structural towers with toothpicks and marshmallows. This helped us develop our engineering and mathematical S.T.E.A.M. skills – along with self-regulation. The trickiest part of the activity was getting the marshmallows on the end our toothpicks, instead of the tips of our tongues!

In our second week we focussed on the women in our lives – make dry goods cookie jars. Using food technology, mathematics and art we created perfectly measured dry ingredients to make a delicious batch of cookies for Mother’s Day. The children then decorated the Mason jars and included instructions on how to make the cookies, together as a family. They were beautiful to look at and reports came in from mums that the cookies were a hit too!

Our third week was a blend of art and science where we worked with crayon (oil) and water colours to learn what happens when oil and water mixed. Lots of learning happened and the end result is some beautiful batik inspired artwork.

In our fourth week, we enjoyed entering new realities in Prep to Year 3 Makerspace. Students got to have a go with Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality. Students used our iPads and the Quiver App to bring their artwork to life. We also worked on our gross motor skills, learning how to navigate the ‘Beat Saber’ App on the Oculus VR goggles. Our VR goggles are loved among our students and is becoming a session we ensure an opportunity for each term.

In our fifth session in Term 2, there was lots of conversation around the Federal Election – so we thought we would combine technology and art together to create our own form of ‘campaign buttons’. Students first created the artwork they wanted to showcase in their button pins and then worked with the ‘Green Jackets’ and the College’s very own button maker machine to create their own button pin. Students were quite taken with this form of ‘old fashion’ technology.

Slime is always a hit in Prep to Year 3 Makerspace sessions and this term we got gooey with the addition of glitter. While students cheer on Slime Day – the jury is still out whether the adults in the family are as thrilled to have a bag of homemade slime enter the family home upon pick up. The Makerspace Team is still convinced that the smiles – and learning – is worth it!

We always end our Makerspace program by making ice cream and discussing the science behind this. The delicious final project is created with basic ingredients, plastic bags and kid-power. As this is a definite outdoor activity and the temperatures had dropped by the end of Term 2, our students were tough and dealt with cold fingers as they made beautiful ice cream. They soon forgot about the cold as they were adding sauces and sweets to their creations. Sticky smiles everywhere!  

Our Prep to Year 3 Makerspace program was another success this term, and one of the reasons for our ongoing success is our ‘Green Jackets’. The program has Senior School student volunteers, who help manage the program and work with our youngest Makerspace students to aide them and give advice with their projects and creations. They are extraordinary in their love and support of both our projects and our students.

Next week, we have a new group of Makerspace students beginning our Term 3 program. Our Year 2 and Year 3 Makerspace students meet on Wednesday afternoons in the Lilly Pilly Learning Centre and our Prep and Year 1 students meet on Thursday afternoons in the Lilly Pilly Learning Centre. While our program is full for Term 3, please consider registering your child for Term 4. Places are available first to students who have not been able to join earlier in the year and then by waitlist to our past Makerspacers.

Please use the link to register or contact Stephanne Siberry in our A.B. Paterson College Libraries for more details https://makerspace.abpat.qld.edu.au/

Stephanne Siberry
Head of Library Services