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Maker Camp combines innovation and imagination

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Maker Camp is a four-day camp hosted by University Libraries for students age 10-14. The mission of the camp is to get young students engaged in hands-on, creative collaboration. Campers receive hands-on experience and use library resources to build arcade games out of recyclable materials, 3-D printed material, and computer parts.
Maker Camp is a four day camp for middle schoolers where they come and learn design thinking, coding, circuitry, prototyping, digital prototyping. Then work together as a group to build an arcade game out of cardboard and up-cycled parts. So the first day of camp is all activities and workshops to learn the kinds of skills they'll be using in camp. Then they start ideating and building as teams. Our goals in order are safety, fun, and then learning. But I would say that the goal that is most important to me is that they learn to work as a team, to do something creative and to make something. I think it's an invaluable skill that you're always going to have to use throughout life. Throughout camp, they are creating a process documentation video. So each team will show that video, demonstrate how their game works. And then at the end of every presentation, we'll invite the audience down to play our cardboard arcade. We find that Maker Camp is a great way for the University Library studios to give to the community. We have resources and expertise, and people who love to share their skills. And we love being able to invite a group of folks who doesn't make it into Newman Library, very often–middle schoolers, to get to experience those things and learn from them.