Many of our district school libraries are launching makerspaces: collaborative spaces where students gather to learn and share ideas, equipment and resources. BOCES 2 School Library Services and CaTS are providing the equipment, support and training teachers need to incorporate the new tools into their lesson plans.
Teachers at Churchville-Chili elementary schools recently had an opportunity to experience makerspaces, many for the first time, in an introduction presented by CaTS Technology Specialist Megan Hugg, with help from CaTS Library Services’ Jim Belair, Lindsay Neumire and other Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES specialists. The educators were inspired with the sheer variety of hands-on activities available for use with their students. Teachers learned the basics of how different tools or activities can be used to improve academic performance, build soft skills and empower learners to succeed.
“Makerspaces are exciting and the kids love the approach,” said Churchville-Chili Instructional Coach Andrea Lynch. “As our teachers have a chance to explore the tools, they will come up with infinite ways to incorporate them into their teaching.”
School Library Services currently has 19 different makerspace kits available to our districts. More than 200 kits had been circulated to component school libraries by this February, with 100+ booked for the rest of the school year. About 80% of our component districts have used the kits, and there have been over 40 advance bookings for the 2019-20 school year.