Category Archive: Education

This Week in the Classroom: The FunKey Super #MakerED #STEM Review

This fall I have introduced a new tech platform into my practice.  The FunKey  unlocks tons of potential in a classroom. Do you want a board that reads keystrokes and plays like a… Continue reading

Home #Makerspace: DIY Air Hockey Table for Under $40

This is a scaled down, fun-filled air hockey table is a perfect summer project. Two employees of Brunswick Billiards Co invented Air Hockey in the 1960s.  The game field consists of a low-friction… Continue reading

Home #Makerspace: A DIY Carrom or Marbles Game Board!

This week, we built a game board which you can customize to play marbles, skittles, carrom, billiards, pool, shuffleboard, crokinole and more! My game board features two games, marbles and carrom.  Marbles has… Continue reading

#MakerEd in the Classroom: Exploring #3DPrinting FAQs & Resources

This week I will answer some of the most common questions about 3D printing I get asked as a Maker Educator by administrators and classroom teachers.  Last summer, I published a similar guide… Continue reading

Home #Makerspace: Build a Pinewood Derby Car With #YoungMakers

Every winter, millions of families prepare for serious bonding time at kitchen tables, in garages and in workshops across the country. We enter with dreams of speed, beauty and glory. With a little luck and skill, we leave with pride, joy and a completed Pinewood Derby Car.

This guide will show you how to support and help your young maker design, make and race their derby car.

#Makered Book Review: Tinkerlab by Rachelle Doorley @TinkerLabKids

TinkerLab: A Hands on Guide for Little Inventors by Rachelle Doorley is a beautifully photographed and curated set of experiments for the toddler to 2nd grade set. While her main focus is art prompts and experiments, she has sections on construction, Maker explorations, take apart sessions, chemistry, and more. Rachelle’s book has given me tons of inspiration and insight into the playful mind of very young children. She walks through the process for setting up an art space, with tool & material recommendations. She also spends a lot of time and space discussing the teaching philosophy behind arts education and why its important. Her habits of mind and interviews with experts are fantastic distillations of the Maker ethos.

This Week in the Shop: The Split-Top Bench with Plans

This week in my home shop I finished up a new bench project I developed for class at Nova Labs in Reston, VA. While simple in design and execution, it does involve a full suite of woodworking tools and a a custom jig to complete. This great intermediate project uses the Fab Five of a powered woodshop: table saw, band saw, miter saw, jointer and planer.

The Home #Makerspace: How To Build Your Own Pinball Machine (with Working Launcher & Flipper)

Sometimes, a teacher needs to court a little controversy.  This week, Things 1 & 2 & I build a device which was banned in New York City from the 1940s until 1976, and… Continue reading

Home #Makerspace: How to Saw (for Young and Beginning #Woodworkers)

I use Japanese-style saws exclusively in my classroom and home shop because I have young makers.  I love the quick bite and accuracy of a pull stroke, the low cost and high quality,… Continue reading

#Makerspace Tour: MILL Studio at Gum Springs Library

Loudoun County Public Library system was recently rated one of the top libraries in America.  It boasts a lot of services and a great collection. I like its makerspace, the Mill Studio at… Continue reading

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    You can get in touch with Mr. Patrick at woodshopcowboy AT gmail DOT com.