Makerspace at Pardes

If you’re searching for a school for your child, you may have heard the term “Makerspace.” Parents like yourself are looking specifically for a school with an on-site Makerspace because STEAM emphasis (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) and project-based learning are high on their priority list. These learning hubs provide students with opportunities to develop and hone important 21st century skills and competencies such as problem solving, communication, collaboration, perseverance, and design. 

The Makerspace at Pardes is an environment where children in kindergarten through eighth grade are encouraged to create, innovate, tinker, explore and discover using a variety of tools and materials. Every Pardes student visits the Makerspace weekly for hands-on projects. Time spent in the Makerpsace encourages exploration and creativity while empowering students with the mindset of failing forward – taking risks and then learning and growing from challenges and mistakes. 

The Makerspace concept emphasizes project-based learning, a student-centered pedagogy that is a hallmark of the Pardes experience. In the Makerspace, the projects are the vehicles for the learning as students collaborate, create, evaluate, and problem solve.  While working, they may utilize high tech, low tech, or no tech at all. The Makerspace has many tools available to students, including: 

  • Soldering Irons
  • Electronic Components – LEDs, wire, copper tape, etc.
  • BeeBots – engaging robots for teaching early programming skills
  • Lego WeDo 2.0 Robotics
  • Lego NXT and EV3 Robotics
  • Wonder Workshop Dot and Dash Robots
  • Green Screen/Video
  • Snap Circuits
  • Sewing Machines
  • Bench Vise Work Stations
  • Traditional Tools (Hammers, Screwdrivers, etc.)
  • And More!

Check out a few of the projects our students have completed by grade level. 

Kindergarten Makerspace Project Examples

  • Programming the BeeBots to navigate a maze, which provided important lessons in sequencing and logic.
  • Creating designs out of recycled material related to Dr. Seuss books. Their creations included a rapid house cleaner for The Cat in the Hat and a creature of their own rhyming design for a Wocket in my Pocket.
  • Making Havdalah boxes containing handmade Havdalah candles and spice boxes (in conjunction with their study of Shabbat in Jewish Studies).

 

Lower School Makerspace Project Examples

  • Exploring LEDs and circuits by creating chenille stem flowers that lit up (all grades).
  • Learning to code using both Code.org and Wonder Workshop’s Dot and Dash robots (second grade).
  • Utilizing Lego WeDo 2.0 robots using biomimicry to create an animal that would be able to live in an extreme habitat (third grade).
  • Learning about circuits using Snap Circuits, copper tape, and LEDs (fourth grade).
  • Learning to sew by hand creating sock puppets (fourth grade).
  • Sewing electronic circuits to make a light-up stuffed animal (fourth grade).
  • Using LEDs and copper tape to make a greeting card that lit up for Purim (third and fourth grade).

Middle School Makerspace Project Examples

  • Sewing kippot (fifth grade).                   
  • 3D modeling and printing scale models of the buildings on the Acropolis for a unit on Greece in their Humanities class (fifth grade).
  • Soldering a sculpture of a special moment in their lives that they wrote about in Humanities (fifth grade).
  • Sewing their own tallit (sixth grade).
  • Wiring and soldering a BeetleBot robot from electronic components such as motors, switches, battery cases, and wires. The robot could move and turn when it ran into an object (sixth grade).
  • Making Purim Masks that lit up using LEDs, copper tape, coin batteries, and craft foam (seventh and eighth grade).
  • Making stop-motion animation movies explaining mitosis  in conjunction with their science class (seventh grade).
  • Soldering mixed-media sculptures to represent themes of The Little Prince (seventh grade).
  • Soldering circuit boards for alarm clocks, toy cars, and light-up hearts (eighth grade).
  • Creating a chair out of cardboard that could support an adult (eighth grade).
  • Participating in a Shark Tank style event. Students had to design an engineering solution to  a real problem experienced by a teacher in their classroom. The solution resulted in making the class run more efficiently (eighth grade).

More than a Place

The Makerspace is not just a physical space; it is a living concept. When students step into the Makerspace, they experience much more than projects. They grow from knowledge consumers into knowledge creators and learn that they can be agents for change.

See the Makerspace on Your Campus Tour

We invite you to schedule a tour at Pardes Jewish Day School and come see the Makerspace for yourself! It would be our privilege to show you around and consider your child for admission to our school. Contact us at 480-991-9141 or email admissions@pardesschool.org to plan your visit or request more information.