In partnership with Halifax Public Libraries, Halifax Makerspace has been running some workshops in Arduino and MakeyMakey at Central library, for kids of all ages and those who are young at heart (grown-ups welcome too).
We’ve explored a number of MakeyMakey projects, some quickly assembled through sample programs and games on the MakeyMakey website, others adapted from traditional games like Ring Toss, or even Operation and some extending the online interface of Mindcraft, Pacman and Space Invaders. We’ve made musical fruit and body parts, Play Doh keyboards… we’ve seen robot impressions, some highly unusual dance moves and we’ve exposed parents and children alike to the wonderful world of making.
We’ve learnt that we need to be ready from the minute the workshop officially starts as kids expect to see action immediately. Often, but not in all cases, boys can be little pushier than the girls, so we watch the room carefully to see who might need help in getting started. It’s important that everyone who drops by feels really comfortable. Sometimes, when kids are too distracted by the razzle-dazzle, we try and re-route them to the MakeyMakey video which we think does a great job of really showing what sort of cool stuff can happen when you apply digital behaviours to physical objects. We want them to make the connection that anything is possible here.The whole point of this activity is not to get kids to play games (though of course it’s great to end up with a game you can play), but to encourage them to make them and experiment a little, so they can design and build their own future (and have a ton of fun!).
- Dance Dance Revolution
- Space Invaders
- Ring Toss
- MakeyMakey kit
- The Discovery Centre on Barrington often (but not guaranteed!) keeps a stock.
- Also available online.
- Aluminium foil
- Duct tape
- Electrical wire
- Wire cutters
- Wire strippers
- Self-adhesive aluminium foil (available from Canadian Tire)
- Cardboard (old boxes flattened)