Makers

Expand/Collapse Makers


WNET is a proud partner of the Maker Party, an initiative hosted by Mozilla, the MacArthur Foundation, and the National Writing Project in which people around the world meet up, learn to make things, and share what they've made online. This collection is designed to support the Maker Party by providing a one-stop shop of STEM and digital making resources that focus on the problem, technology, or process behind object creation.

Teachers can use the collection, which is categorized into design, how to (DIY), arts and crafts, robotics, and engineering subtopics, in conjunction with hands-on activities to further this initiative. Like the Maker Party, this collection is designed to encourage hands-on engagement in science, technology, engineering, math, and the arts.

  • Designing a Wheelchair for Rugby

    In this video segment adapted from Design Squad, teams of high school kids use the engineering design process to build an automated wheelchair to help a U.S. Paralympic athlete train.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Air Bag Design

    Using automobile crash test footage, this video segment adapted from NOVA shows some of the challenges in designing the air bag.

    Grades: 3-12
  • Balloon Brain: Designing a Helmet

    In this video segment adapted from ZOOM, cast members are challenged to design protective headgear for a water balloon using what they know about the properties of the materials available.
    Grades: K-8
  • Triangles: Designing a Newspaper Chair

    Watch the ZOOM cast build a chair out of newspaper by making good use of the strength of triangles.
    Grades: 3-8
  • Kid Inventor: The Collapsible Lacrosse Stick

    In this video segment from ZOOM, Lauren explains how she invented a way to make her lacrosse stick fit in her backpack.
    Grades: K-8
  • How Do You Keep Lemonade Cool?

    This video segment adapted from FETCH!™ shows contestants experimenting with different materials to see which is the best insulator and thus best able to keep the lemonade at their stand cool for customers.

    Grades: K-8
  • Kid Designer: A Comfortable Cardboard Chair

    Follow along in this video segment from ZOOM as 13-year-old Nick explains how he came up with a design, tested materials, and constructed his own cardboard chair.
    Grades: 3-12
  • Designing Swimming Prosthetics for a Dancer

    In this video segment adapted from DESIGN SQUAD, teams of high school kids use the engineering design process to build specialized prostheses for a double-amputee dancer who performs underwater.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Robo Arm Challenge

    In this video from Design Squad Nation, kids design and build controllable mechanical arms and use them to lift objects and play games. They also learn how NASA uses robotic arms on many of its missions.

    Grades: 3-8
  • Soft Landing Challenge

    In this activity from Design Squad Nation, kids model NASA’s airbag landing system. They design and build protective covers made of balloons to protect an egg dropped from a height of three feet.

    Grades: 3-8
  • Designing Electric Circuits: Door Alarm

    In this video segment adapted from ZOOM, cast members design and build door alarms using a variety of materials, including aluminum foil, batteries, and buzzers.

    Grades: 3-8
  • Building Simple Machines: A Glass of Milk, Please

    In this video segment adapted from ZOOM, the cast shows how the 34 steps in their Rube Goldberg invention use everything from gravity to carbon dioxide gas in order to accomplish one simple task: pouring a glass of milk.

    Grades: 3-8
  • Design Squad: Suspension Bridge

    In this video segment adapted from Design Squad—a PBS TV series featuring high school contestants tackling engineering challenges—students employ the concepts of tension and compression to build a suspension bridge without the aid of power tools.
    Grades: 5-12
  • Design Squad: Truss Bridge

    In this video segment adapted from Design Squad—a PBS TV series featuring high school contestants tackling engineering challenges—students employ the concepts of tension and compression as they build a truss bridge without the aid of power tools.
    Grades: 5-12
  • Easy-Fit Design

    In this video produced for Teachers' Domain, Chi-An Wang, a mechanical engineering graduate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, describes her process when working with New Balance to design a new triathlon shoe.

    Grades: 3-12
  • Gas in A Bag

    In this video, watch as students experiment with a recipe that makes a chemical reaction and forms carbon dioxide.

    Grades: PreK-5
  • Velcro

    Two children are introduced to biomimicry—design inspired by nature—through the story of Velcro, in this animated video from LOOP SCOOPS.
    Grades: 1-4
  • Designing a Roller Coaster

    In this video segment adapted from ZOOM, the cast is challenged to design and test a roller coaster with loops, hills, and U-turns.
    Grades: 3-5
  • Building Simple Machines: Plant Quencher

    In this video segment from ZOOM, Jillian explains how her simple machine uses marbles, levers, flowing sand, and a spinning wheel to water a plant.

    Grades: 3-8
  • GEMS CO2 Cars

    In this video from DragonflyTV, Hannah, Victoria and Laura design and build CO2-propelled dragsters for a state competition.

    Grades: 4-6

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