Wednesday, June 4, 2014

AREF Showcase

Last night I participated in the Alum Rock Educational Foundation showcase at San Antonio Elementary School in the Mayfair, San Jose. It was a blast sharing summer camp projects with youth at this event.
Mariachi performers test out Audio Line project.
It was inspiring to listen to local youth performers from the Alum Rock Jazz Band and from the Mariachi Tradicional de Alum Rock. Other groups and projects supported by the Alum Rock Educational Foundation also showcased their projects at tables ringing the auditorium. The Art & Design Thinking Camp had a table at which I displayed projects for children to explore.
Younger sibling of mariachi player explores paper circuitry.


Younger siblings of mariachi performers play with bots.

Sewing circuitry
Mariachi Band
Students explore 3D printed objects, stop motion animation on the computer, low resolution prototype model of a bus stop shelter (with working solar light with sensor), conductive paint project and maker journal.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Designing a Mobile Makerspace

This summer I will be conducting a six week Art & Design Thinking camp in Alum Rock, San Jose. Besides the curriculum, I have begun to design the mobile structures needed for this makerspace. The goal is to be able to pop-up this makerspace in classes and informal learning spaces throughout the school year. I need to set the stage with items that can move about, break down and store easily.

ROLLING PEGBOARD:
Mobile pegboards made from Ikea rolling garment racks, Home Depot pegboards, and bungee cords. We will use one board for tinkering projects (such as marble runs and collaborative circuitry projects). We will use the second board for hanging tools. 
Materials list: 
Ikea Rigga Clothes Rack:$12.99 
Pegboard 2' x 4' (Home Depot): $7.97 
Canopy tarp bungee (12" bin of 8): $5.47 
Total unit cost for one rolling system: $26.43 















Pegboard hooks and recycled water bottles for display containers. 

















Next step is to add info tags regarding projects

















Above: An assortment of projects: 3D printing, toy hacking, pipe cleaner circuitry, paper circuitry, draw bots, and art projects with recycled materials.

COLLAPSIBLE STORAGE BINS:
Materials list:  FLYNNEN Laundry basket 7.99
IKEA laundry hampers to be used as materials storage bins.
















I also see storage of student ongoing work as an issue to address. Counter space needs to be used as active workspace. I envision creating a system of ceiling suspended storage bins that can be pulled up and down via a pulley system. After looking about a bit in the web, I think plant pulleys might work best for storage of lightweigh prototyping models. Fabric bins could be suspended from the metal ceiling tile cross bars. To the bottom of each basket I will sew a pull cord. Each pulley costs around $6.00.

CEILING STORAGE PULLEY SYSTEM:
Materials list:  
plant pulleys  $6.00 (11.99 for 2 pack)
mesh basket $3.00 
pull cord; scrap rope and metal washer .50
unit cost $9.50 x 20 campers=$190.00 if students are not sharing baskets.













plant pulley




















Bench:
As a project to begin this fall, I want to make a few benches like this for pop up makerspaces. I would also like to make a few work bench tables in this manner as well.
I have not costed this out yet. 
Photo taken by Lisa Whitsitt in Amsterdam.





Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Audio Lines

Last fall I saw the 555 Noise Maker project online at the Bare Conductive website and thought it was wonderful. I really wanted to incorporate it into the Alum Rock Art & Design Thinking Camp I am running this summer through the Alum Rock Educational Foundation.
Today I got all the parts and will be listing where I purchased them all from.
Below is my test run at making one of these with my daughter:


To design this as a class project I will have the students assist me in soldering the wires to the clamps and we will be soldering the ends of the battery snap and speaker wires to breadboard pins so that we have plugin components for our breadboards.  For the art component of the project, we will be exploring line and pattern to create art that clips into the clamp to become interactive with sound. After we complete the project, students will envision how they could extend the project or pivot it in new directions.

I purchased all my supplies at HSC and Anchor Electronics. The conductive paint is from Bare Conductive.

Luz Rivas and DIY Girls have done this project and you can see some of their work here: http://www.bareconductive.com/make/diy-girls/

Very inspiring is what Lawrence Livermore National Labs is doing with 3D printing and conductive ink. There is a sample video at this link: https://manufacturing.llnl.gov/additive-manufacturing/designer-engineered-materials. It will be fun to show this to the campers so that they can imagine where this technology may go in the future.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

U.S. 101 Interchange Project - Capitol Expressway/Yerba Buena Interchange

This coming Friday there will be a ribbon cutting ceremony for the completion of the pedestrian/bike overpass at Capitol Expressway and 101 in San Jose, California. This ribbon cutting will also celebrate the contribution of local middle school students to the development of the art enhancements for the Tully/101 pedestrian/bike overpass. Photos of the final transit art can be found at this Flickr set. The project was made possible by a generous loan of HP stylus tablets from the Krause Center for Innovation at Foothill College. Three classes of 6th grade students at Renaissance Academy at Fischer participated in this project in the fall of 2011. I conducted the workshop series in the art classes of Mr. Jesus Guerra. This project was a program of the VTA in collaboration with the San Jose Office of Cultural Affairs.
Tamale radial pattern design inspires laser cut steel pattern on entry gate pillar of pedestrian/bike overpass.
A student photo of a neighborhood fig tree was the source image for the pattern generated in the software tool Repper. The design inspired the pattern for concrete impressions on street dividers.
Student photos of the local neighborhood included images of Reid Hillview Airport. A student pattern created in Repper inspired the laser cut steel pattern included on gateway pillars to the pedestrian/bike overpass.


Past blog postings on the student work process:


Past Blog postings on the fabrication process: