Philadelphia, PA: Maker Jawn

The Maker Jawn Initiative at the Free Library of Philadelphia is a team of artists, engineers, designers, and thinkers who work in libraries. We are united in our dedication to mentoring non-dominant youth as well as their families in creative technology. We are located in all six North Philadelphia neighborhood libraries. We encourage makers of all ages through access to resources, tools, and safe spaces for interest driven projects. Maker Jawn experiments with creating replicable, scalable spaces and programs that prioritize the creativity, cultural heritage, and interests of diverse communities, embedded directly within the fabric of the library.

http://www.makerjawn.org/

Understanding the Post-Emergent Phase of a Makerspace

Creating and starting a makerspace is an exciting venture; you build a team and purchase new equipment. There are a lot of resources (people and articles) that describe how emergent makerspaces can get off the ground. Once your makerspace has been open for a few years, you begin to experience challenges that are distinctly different from those start-up challenges, and there are very few, if any, resources that describe what this new, “post-emergent” phase entails. Read the rest »

Fail and Try Again: Maker Jawn at the Free Library gets Philadelphians of all stripes involved in the maker movement

Antony, a 12-year-old seventh grader at Conwell Middle School in Port Richmond, has encountered a few unexpected barriers in testing his hypothesis.

“There are several flaws,” he says about the experiment he just built, a full water bottle with two straws hot glued into it, one of which is topped with a cardboard square. Read the rest »

Youth-run Design and Research at the Free Library of Philadelphia, Summer 2012

From July to August 2012, 35 teens from Philadelphia worked at the Free Library to give their voice to what sort of environment and programs the library should offer for youth in Philly.

35 youth ages 14-19 served as Teen Programming Assistants for the Free Library of Philadelphia’s 2012 Summer Literacy and Leadership Program—a program funded by WorkReady Philadelphia. Read the rest »