Palos Verdes California
Contact: @garymdonahue (twitter)
Chadwick School, founded in 1935 by visionary educator Margaret Lee Chadwick, sits atop a hill on the Palos Verdes Peninsula in Los Angeles County, CA. The only K-12 independent, college preparatory day school in the greater South Bay area, Chadwick currently enrolls approximately 825 students. Our 45-acre campus provides a beautiful and safe setting conducive to serious study, vigorous play and companionship among friends.
Description of Maker Space
Our Makerspace is completing its 5th year in operation which I think qualifies for grandfather status in Makerspace years. Two years ago we completely rebuilt the space from scratch and took that opportunity to add:
- Custom built stainless steel tables
- Mobile industrial storage units
- Heavy duty shelving to hold 100 in-progress student projects
- 4 Sinks
- 2 student work benches with hand tools
- Epilog Laser Cutter
- 3 Makerbots 3D Printers
- Air filtration Solutions (One for laser cutter, additional VOC/HEPA
- for the room, and air purifying plants)
- Dedicated safe cutting areas
- Extensive consumable materials area
- Projection/sound system
- Bank of 12 laptops
- Tile flooring with in-floor data/power links
- Extensive robotics and physical computing
- Mannequins for fashion design
- Extensive art supplies
Description of Program
Experiential learning has long been a key institutional focuses at Chadwick and our Makerspace very much fits into a continue extension of that educational goal. 80% of the activity in the space is curriculum driven in that our Resident Makers co-create design briefs with grade levels & single subject teachers. Faculty members co-teach in the space with our Resident Makers. Students spend on average 6 weeks (3-4hrs a week) scheduled during regular classroom time to work on a given design brief(s). After school programs, exploratories, and faculty in-service/projects make up the remains 20% of usage.
Examples of How the Space is Being Used
Given our Makerspace is designed to allow the broadest possible amount of projects we try to create design briefs that allow for a broad scope of possibilities. Overall popular & showcase projects include:
- Green energy: Solar wind powered vehicles/kinetic sculptures, wind turbines)
- Coded objects (lamps, furniture, utensils)
- 3D printed everything with lots of accessories for small scale
- Hydraulic powered creations
- Lego EV3 Mindstorm creations (sensor driven recycle bins, bluetooth controlled home blinds, egg hatching alerts for school farm.
- Scratch with LegoWeDo / Scratch board creations
- Makeblock with Ardunio
- Classroom lamp
- Shade structures
- Reading cubbies
- Interactive clocks
- Display cases
- Laser cut signs and classroom materials.
We are adding two additional Makerspaces to meet the demand in our growing middle and upper schools. Add a number of mobile stations for expanding Makerspace activities beyond a single room. Double our efforts in expanding our consumable materials area. Add additional 3D printers and digital fabrication equipment.