The perfect place to pursue dreams

| November 17, 2017 | 0 Comments

BY JODENE HAACK AND NICHOLAS WILCOX

King David High School Linksfield in Johannesburg, Gauteng, has proudly set up the KDLMakerSpace, the central purpose of which is to give pupils the space to innovate.

We believe that “making and tinkering” and the philosophies behind those activities are an essential
part of 21st century education.1
We believe that “making and tinkering” and the philosophies behind those activities are an essential
part of 21st century education.1 Practically, this is a space that is filled with cutting-edge technology, from a laser cutter to 3D printers and vinyl cutter, as well as more traditional avenues of pursuing creativity, such as old-fashioned pens, pencils, glue guns and sewing machines. Students are able to utilise a wide variety of tools to bring their ideas to life. It is difficult to cater for innovation, as innovation, by definition, involves a wildly creative process that exists outside of regular trains of thought. Thus, the KDLMakerSpace aims to provide students with as many tools and materials as possible to help them maximise their potential. It provides hands-on learning, helps develop critical thinking skills and even boosts self-confidence.

Where dreams are born
This project started off as little more than a very hopeful dream to create a space of freedom, learning and collaboration. From humble beginnings, this dream is gradually growing into a greater and greater reality. The room itself was redesigned and redecorated and is now a flexible space; a combination of a workshop, computer laboratory and art studio, with custom designed workspaces to cater for all needs. With the support of our generous donors, as well as staff and students, we have succeeded in creating a space full of the tools to help physically
manifest dreams and ideas – a space that is limited only by creativity.

Damon Fine and Jay Kaplan are two Grade 11 students who have been instrumental in the creation of the maker space. Fine has already been able to reap the benefits of the space, saying, “The KDLMakerSpace has given me an opportunity to explore and develop my creativity, enhance my understanding of new technologies and learn how to work as a team player.” The aim is to foster entrepreneurship and it is a space for making, collaborating, learning and sharing. Kaplan agrees: “The KDLMakerSpace has given me the opportunity to proudly display who I really am in innovative and revolutionary ways.” We look forward to seeing the space grow and develop, and we are also excited to see curiosity and imagination come to life. We hope to see great things from the KDLMakerSpace, to
nurture and encourage our students beyond what they believe to be the limits of their ingenuity.

Jodene Haack and Nicholas Wilcox teach in the KDLMakerSpace.

Reference:
1. See: https://www.makerspaces.com/what-is-a-makerspace/

Category: Summer 2017

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