Seventy Crockett County High School students attended the grand opening and ribbon cutting of the CavLibrary Makerspace on September 14, 2016. After weeks of anticipation about the new creative space, CavLibrary was literally buzzing with excitement. All 70 students participated in the ribbon cutting with the chant of “1-2-3-Make!” and then were ushered into the Makerspace by CCHS Librarian Mindy Nichols. Makerspaces, sometimes also referred to as hackerspaces, hackspaces, and fablabs are creative, DIY spaces where people can gather to create, invent, and learn. In libraries they often have 3D printers, software, electronics, craft and hardware supplies and tools, and more. The CavLibrary Makerspace provides students with 3D printing, Snap Circuits, Makey Makey, Legos, K’Nex, Suspends, Arts & Crafts, Puzzles, Games, a Lego Wall, and a Green Screen.
When CCHS librarian Mindy Nichols approached Principal Jared Foust last winter about transforming CavLibrary into a more flexible and personalized learning environment, which included some updates to the main library space as well as the repurposing of a small, rarely used computer lab into a student Makerspace, he listened intently and embraced the idea. “I am forever grateful to Mr. Foust for trusting me enough to give me the go-ahead on a project he knew very little about. When I explained the concept and how it would provide a unique and creative learning environment for the students at CCHS, he was on board. From there, he searched for resources and funds to provide a great deal of the supplies in our Makerspace today,” says Nichols.
“While our Makerspace is considered low-tech starting out, I’m excited to see where the interests of our students will lead us over the next few months and years. If their level of excitement seen today holds steady, CCHS will have hallways full of makers ready to go out into colleges, universities, and workplaces prepared to think, invent, and create, “shared Nichols.
Students will be able to utilize the Makerspace in “Open Make” times each Friday during U Time and each Monday during lunch for “Maker Monday.” Students will be allowed to explore the different materials and technology available in the space and create freely, or Nichols also plans to form a working student committee to create organized monthly STEM challenges as well. In addition to personal exploration and usage, the Makerspace will also be utilized instructionally for classes to create models and objects in their discipline of study.
“This is an exciting day for our students, school, and community,” said Nichols, “and it wouldn’t have been possible without the donations, ideas, and hard work of so many people.” In addition to Principal Foust, Mrs. Nichols would also like to thank Mr. Michael Manness, Mr. Keith Eason, Mr. Bobby Mullins, Mr. P.A. Pratt, Mr. Wayne Carroll, Mr. Rusty McKnight, Mrs. Kristi Watson, Mr. Brian Faught, the CCHS Maintenance Staff, CCHS Faculty & Staff, CCHS Construction & Metals Classes, FCCLA Officers, Library Aides, Mrs. Charlie Moore, and Evergreeen Recyclers.
If you or your business would like to partner with CavLibrary to grow their Makerspace by donating supplies, funds, or pertinent services, please contact Mindy Nichols @ firstname.lastname@example.org.
Follow CavLibrary’s Maker Movement on Twitter @cavlibrary, on Instagram @cav.library, and on the Crockett County High School Facebook page.
My Cavaliers never cease to amaze me; they have embraced every aspect of our improved creative space. Just look at them thinking, creating, inventing, and having tons of fun! I’m excited to open our maker room for them next week!
CCHS students attended the first Library @ Lunch of the year–a Volunteer State Book Award Book Tasting. The 2016-2017 nominated titles were displayed with QR codes linked to book trailers. Students scanned and viewed or used the links found here.
Forty Cavaliers attending our first book club meeting of the year! Students voted to read the following genres this year: mystery, fantasy, manga, romance, and science fiction. Committees were formed to host the first Battle of the Books @ CCHS as well as design a 2016-2017 t-shirt. If you missed the meeting, see Mrs. Nichols!