We are excited to kickoff the 2nd annual Piedmont Mini Maker Faire – a celebration of K-12 Science, Technology, Engineering, Math + Design (S.T.E.A.M.) education for the Piedmont community – on Saturday, May 30 11-3pm at Piedmont High School! We will have a 75+ projects from Beach, Havens, Wildwood, PMS, and PHS students along with community and outside makers.
Get your FREE tickets via eventbrite today to save you waiting in line at the Faire!
Submit your Mini Maker Faire project today — it can be a school project, Science Fair project, or your own project. Piedmont K-12 students and community welcome! DEADLINE May 1.
Another exciting month ahead for S.T.E.A.M. education in Piedmont!
3/14 – Art is Education Festival THIS Saturday: Piedmont Makers is joining forces with PAINTS for a great event on Saturday 12-3pm in the Ellen Driscoll Playhouse & environs at Havens. Come for creative activities like Stop Motion filmmaking, Instrument making, Cardboard Sculpture parklet & more! Tickets here.
3/14 – Epic Pi Day! – We kicked off celebration of Pi Day at our Tech Social event this past Friday. Looking for more? A recent Edutopia article by Noelle Filippenko (founder of NationalPiDay.org) highlights a bunch more fun Pi activities to try.
3/21 – Moffett Field Rocket Launch – For the Makers who built model rockets at our last Makerspace, we will take a field trip to Moffett Field on Saturday morning 3/21 for the next Lunar Model Rocket Club launch. Please RSVP with Andy Schuetz (email@example.com) if you plan to go so we have enough motors, ignitors, wadding for the launch!
3/28 – Piedmont Makerspace “Arduino Day!” – We will host our next Makerspace event on Saturday 3/28 12-3pm. We will do an Open Make with Arduino building circuits to blink an LED, respond to light or temperature, and more. Make sure you bring a Chromebook or laptop to the event so you write code to make an Arduino control the world around you! This event is part of global Arduino Day – a worldwide event bringing together Arduino people and projects. We will also have mentors and elementary science teachers on hand for Mini Maker Faire or Science Fair projects. FREE tickets, Arduino kits, Makers T-Shirts all available on the eventbrite page.
Piedmont Mini Maker Faire Call for Makers NOW OPEN – Please submit your project for the 2nd annual PUSD Mini Maker Faire May 30! It can be a school project, Science Fair project, or your own project. Piedmont K-12 students and community welcome! DEADLINE May 1.
School Board: New CS Course for HS graduation requirement – At the next School Board meeting 3/11 7pm, the School Board will be considering two new PHS Computer Science courses – Exploring Computer Science and Mobile Apps Programming (course descriptions here). Exploring Computer Science will replace the existing Computer Applications course to ensure that all Piedmont High School students experience the foundational understanding of modern computing and computational thinking.
March Board Meeting – We will hold our next Piedmont Makers board meeting 3/25 7pm in the Havens library. If you are interested in helping out with upcoming Makerspace, Tech Social, or Mini Maker Faire events, please RSVP firstname.lastname@example.org to attend.
Below is a monthly summary of upcoming Piedmont Makers & Piedmont S.T.E.A.M. events.
Piedmont Mini Maker Faire Call for Projects NOW OPEN – Please submit your project idea for the 2nd annual PUSD Mini Maker Faire May 30! The Call for Projects form is now live at with 25 projects already signed up from this past weekend’s Makerspace. For inspiration, view last year’s projects or a slideshow of 2014 Maker Faire projects from around the world.
“Robotics” Tech Social – Please join us for the February Tech Social THIS Friday 2/6 at the Ellen Driscoll Auditorium (Havens) at 6 pm (cost: $5)! The theme is Robotics. We will have a few robot demonstrations, including an Eksobionics exoskeleton by Dr. Adam Zoss, and ask all attendees to bring robot-themed activities. If you want to make a robot costume, please bring a large enough box to serve as your “body”. Lego Mindstorm sets would be good for this event! Register here in advance so we can order enough food!
“Make a Rocket” Makerspace – Thanks to everyone who made our January Makerspace “Design a Project” day a success! We will host our next Makerspace event on Saturday 2/28 1-4pm. We will do an Open Make building paper rockets to launch with compressed air or model rockets to launch at Moffett Field. We will also have mentors and teachers on hand for Mini Maker Faire or Science Fair projects. Get your FREE tickets or buy a rocket kit here.
Next School Board: Math Task Force / New CS Courses – At the next School Board meeting 2/11 7pm, the community Common Core Math Task Force will present their recommendations for the school board and community review. Also, the School Board will be considering three new PHS Computer Science courses – Mobile Apps Programming, Exploring Computer Science, and Web Design and Programming (course descriptions here). Please attend for this important discussion.
Science Fairs – Dates for the elementary science fairs are now set: Beach will be May 20, Havens will be April 30, Wildwood will be May 21. Interested students are encouraged to sign up to display their projects at the PUSD Mini Maker Faire too. We have been collaborating with the science teachers to also introduce engineering projects that students could show at the Mini Maker Faire. Parents – please come to upcoming monthly Makerspace events to work on your projects with your children!
February Board Meeting – We will hold our next Piedmont Makers board meeting the week of 2/16. If you are interested in helping out with upcoming Makerspace, Tech Social, or Mini Maker Faire events, please email email@example.com.
Piedmont K-12 students (& parents) are invited to the Piedmont Makerspace Design a Project day – Saturday, Jan. 31 1-4pm. We will do a design thinking exercise to get everyone brainstorming about project ideas for the upcoming Piedmont Mini Maker Faire (or Science Fair or other school project). We will have plenty of materials on-hand for rapid prototyping as well as project inspiration (books, magazines, community makers). Sign up your project idea for the Mini Maker Faire and take home your prototype!
What’s a Prototype? A first draft of a project. Use paper, cardboard, tape, rubber bands, popsicle sticks, pipe cleaners, color dots, paper clips, staplers, string, whatever to try out an idea and get feedback to improve the next version. Prototyping is fundamental to design thinking.
Happy New Year and welcome back to a fun month ahead!
“Disassembly” Tech Social – Please join us for the January Tech Social this Friday January 9 at 6pm! The theme is “Disassembly” and we are asking attendees to bring devices, appliances, toys, etc. (working or not) for disassembly. Dr. Ayyana Chakravartula will be speaking about her work analyzing product and device failures. We have also invited the Fixit Clinic to join us for guided disassembly of your broken stuff. Open it up. See how it worked. Hopefully fix it.
January Makerspace “Call for Projects” – Thanks to everyone who made our first Makerspace event in December such a success! We will host our next Makerspace event on Saturday 1/31 1-4pm. We will do another open make with guided quick projects and also kick off our “Call for Projects” for the upcoming K-12 Mini Maker Faire in May. Get your FREE tickets.
January Board Meeting – We will hold our next Piedmont Makers board meeting on Thursday, January 15 7pm. If you are interested in helping out with upcoming Makerspace, Tech Social, or Mini Maker Faire events, please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Speaker Series on Common Core Math – Education reform advocate Dan Meyer discusses Common Core Math, and the importance and method of teaching students to formulate and solve problems rather than memorize and apply formulas. January 27 7:30pm @ Piedmont High.
PHS update – Computer Science teachers Mr. Mattix and Dr. Raj are planning a new Mobile Apps Programming class for next year as a capstone class for advanced students that will complement the rich CS curriculum in place (Joy of Computing, Exploring Computer Science, AP CS). Computer Science momentum — demonstrated again by last month’s Week of Code — continues!
PMS update – The Makers student lunch club will kickoff again in January with Mr. Santos and Sally Aldridge organizing. Stay tuned for more info as we look to build upon the great projects from last year.
2nd annual PUSD Mini Maker Faire May 30 – Save the date!
Please join us for the January Tech Social on January 9 at 6pm in the Piedmont Middle School Multi-Purpose Room! The theme is “Disassembly” and we are asking attendees to bring devices, appliances, toys, etc. for disassembly. Note: re-assembly is unlikely. Also bring eye protection, just in case!
Dr. Ayyana Chakravartula will be speaking about her work analyzing product and device failures.
We have also invited the Fixit Clinic to join us for guided disassembly of your broken stuff. Open it up. See how it worked. Hopefully fix it.
Similar to previous Tech Socials, the event will include social time, pizza dinner, a short TEDx-like talk, and self-organizing pods with topics such as Minecraft, board games, wearables, and any other topics you would like to share!
The fee is $5 (which covers equipment and refreshments) and you can of course donate more to support this effort!
We have a busy couple weeks ahead as the Saturday Makerspace Open House and Friday night Tech Social lead into the Week of Code the week of December 8.
Piedmont Makerspace Open House – We will host an open house at the new Piedmont Makerspace at the Piedmont Middle School shop on Saturday December 6 at 1pm. The theme for the event will be “light” and we will be making holiday LED ornaments (for the younger students) and Arduino controlled holiday lights (for the older students) as well as other cool projects. Also bring your ideas on how to make the space even better for monthly events leading up to the Mini Maker Faire in May. Get your FREE tickets.
“Coding” Tech Social – Please join us Friday 6pm for the December Tech Social! The theme is “Coding” in honor of the following Hour of Code week from December 8-14. The featured speaker will be Ali Partovi, Co-Founder of Code.org, along with pizza dinner. Please consider bringing a device (tablet, smartphone, laptop) with your favorite apps that teach or utilize coding. We will have a projector available so that you can demonstrate to a small group during the self-organizing pod sessions. Please note the new location at PMS multi-purpose room! $5 per person tickets.
Week of Code – Over 1250 PUSD students participated in the Week of Code last year and the district is preparing for more the week of December 8. If your kids are looking for more, consider the 20 hour follow-up beginner courses for K-1, 2-5 and advanced courses for 4-5 and beyond.
Next Board Meeting – We will hold our next Piedmont Makers board meeting In January. If you are interested in helping out with upcoming Makerspace, Tech Social, or Mini Maker Faire events, please email email@example.com