Manhattan Beach Unified School District

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Educational Services » Makerspace



Makerspace is a hands-on, creative environment for learning life skills.  Students engage in STEAM challenges (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) with a focus on helping people, animals, and our planet. It's a place for all students to do meaningful work - to experiment, innovate, and invent.

Makerspace helps prepare students for any challenge ahead by teaching healthy habits of mind. Makers develop a sense of purpose and resilience through empathy, ​critical thinking, creative problem-solving, and an understanding of cause and effect.

The engineering design curriculum allows students to plan, build, test, and improve their ideas using different tools and materials. This is the same process Google and IDEO use in their design sprints. It emulates Reggio-Emilia and Constructivist educational philosophies of educating the whole child. Makers overcome challenges, try, fail, and try again in a supportive environment, and persist. Makers help our classmates brainstorm, learn from others, and become strong, collaborative team members for the common good.

The program supports the child's innate wish to have autonomy, competence, and relatedness. This is an open, student-directed, reflective place of learning and exploring where kids engage in trial and error. No grades. Everyone learns from their mistakes, iteration, and self-reflection.

Materials are provided by PTA funds and by much appreciated parent donations. Makerspace Specialists are made possible through generous funding from MBEF.

All K-5 students in MBUSD ​have Makerspace Lab as part of the school curriculum.
STEAM projects span across curricular areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math, reading, and more. Makerspace Specialists collaborate with Science Specialists to map NGSS lessons by grade level. The Makerspace Specialists at each site create lessons and prepare supplies that include goals from NGSS curriculum maps and beyond.