I got to talking with my colleague about makerspaces today. Plans for the new middle school library include space for a makerspace… That’s an awkward sentence… The current plans have the makerspace behind a door in a room of its own. That’s not sitting well with some folks involved in the planning process (understandably so). Carolyn and I talked about what a makerspace should look like, and when it comes down to it, we really have no idea. I like to think that with the right guides, passion, and curiosity making will happen regardless of the square footage and available storage. There’s truth to that, I know. But if one has the opportunity to plan out a makerspace, one should dream big.
Personally I’m of the opinion that an entire library should function as a makerspace. Sure, there’s a designated area for the bigger equipment and either stationary or mobile storage, but I think it’s in the spirit of the maker movement to be able to use, interact with, and manipulate one’s environment kind of like what was done with the stairs at Cal Poly.
Ok. Maybe this philosophy is mildly impractical.
If ALL the library can’t be one giant makerspace, what’s essential for the designated square footage? Passion. Mentors from multiple disciplines. Tools for getting the jobs done. Plenty of storage. Lots of workspace. Comfortable areas for talking/working out problems. Places to scribble ideas. What else?