Last evening Crossroads hosted the Grand Opening for our Makerspace. Students and teachers were involved in the planning and execution of this event, and we hosted approximately 120 visitors. Most of these visitors were from our own community. We also hosted a few prospective families as well as guests from CBC High School, the Disruption Department (our fantastic consultants), Grand Center Arts Academy, MOREnet, and the Innovative Technology Education fund (our grantors).
Each station in the Makerspace and computer lab was “live” with students designing, making, programing, and explaining what they were doing. Our students and their work was impressive, and our guests certainly noted that our Makerspace is driven with the curiosity, intellect, and quality work of our students. This kind of live-and-in-action learning, when students can explain what they are doing, why it is valuable, what makes it good, and how it fits into the context of their own learning and Crossroads, is both rigorous, because it is challenging, and vigorous, because it is energizing and engaging.
Our Makerspace is designed to be contextualized in our commitment to Good Work, to work that is ethical, engaging, and excellent. The Breaker organization, with which Mark Norwood worked this summer, and Crossroads are talking about a possible partnership where students and faculty at Crossroads work to answer this question: How might we use vacant buildings in St. Louis City for urban and community renewal? This question sits at the intersection of our Good Work program, our work with Design Thinking, and our commitment to social justice. I am looking forward to fostering this relationship with Breaker so that we might offer a two-week program this summer. I will share more details as they become available, and we will need the support of our community to make this work for sure.
In the meantime, if you haven’t visited our Makerspace, please take some time to do so. Who knows what designer, maker, builder, or tinker might come alive in you . . .
With great expectations,
PS Check out the story that aired on Channels 2 and 11 last night here!