I’m exploring the possibility of forming a “Young Makers” club in Albuquerque and am looking for homeschooling families who may want to participate or contribute. The club would include groups of about 6 to 10 kids (ages 12 to 17) with a self-determined project or set of projects to be exhibited and/or sold at the Mini Maker Faire in Albuquerque during the summer (see youngmakers.org). Projects would have a broad scope and be flexible to include any type of “make” idea, especially STEM/STEAMs like electronics, soldering, and circuitry as well as craft skills such as sewing or jewelry making. “Young Makers” would follow a “co-op” model in which kids work collaboratively on “maker” projects facilitated by parents and mentors to develop certain skills that can be built on in other academic pursuits. The club can also be connected locally through a maker space or workshop instead of through a national organization. “Young Makers” would be creative and fun and promote an exciting range of skill-building and cooperation. However, I need advice from other homeschoolers to find out what can work and if families would like to join.
I’m also considering forming a “Hacker-Scouts” guild here in Albuquerque. Hacker-Scouts is a new, national organization (just started in 2012) which also involves kids (ages 8 to 14) in STEM/STEAM projects (see hacker-scouts.org). Although the model is similar to those of other organizations, it is non-competitive and process- rather than goal-oriented. Kids work on a set of determined projects in order to accrue skills and earn badges. For this, I would also need advice and help on issues like how to procure funding for equipment and how to find volunteers with technical knowledge as this group is more structured and requires a larger commitment because of its particular mandate.
The difference between the two groups is in format rather than philosophy which I can explain further as questions arise. Please email me if your family is interested: email@example.com I’ll start some sort of web page if there is enough response.