Each summer I do a couple of Maker Mania Days as a fundraiser for my library. You can read about last year’s Day 1 here. I try to limit the 2-hour activity to students entering grades 3-8. I charge $10 for participation and try to get pre-registration so I know how many to plan for. Please note that this post does contain some affiliate links which won’t cost your more but do help support this blog.
My Supply Table was basically the same for both days. Supplies included basic art supplies like: markers, glue, colored paper, fabric, yarn, etc. It also included things like: a variety of empty boxes, lids from juice containers and sour cream, rubber bands, wax paper, etc. Students could use whatever they needed from this table.
Station 1 – Gadgets and Gizmos
I won this set at a conference and was excited to be able to use it. Unfortunately Gadgets & Gizmos Electronics Science Kit is no longer available except for third-party sellers on Amazon and I don’t think it is worth the current $80+ asking price. All you need for building series and parallel circuits, alarms, a morse code machine, mazes, and fans is included in this kit.
Station 2 – Cool Plastic Bottle Science
Part of the Edge Books – Recycled Science series from Capstone,Cool Plastic Bottle Science (Edge Books: Recycled Science) was the basis for this station. I provided the supplies needed for the cloud in a bottle (p.6), milk jug siphon (p.8), and the balloon inflator (p16).
The siphoning experiment was cool to me – watching liquid transfer from one gallon jug to another. The kids really enjoyed the balloon inflator project – mixing baking soda and vinegar to inflate a balloon.
Station 3 – T-shirt Tote Bag
This was a popular station – even my teen male volunteer had to make one. At the end of the school year, I included a request for t-shirts along with my other “junk” supplies. The instruction we followed are found at https://www.mommypotamus.com/no-sew-t-shirt-tote-bag-tutorial/
Station 4 – Duct Tape
Our library has two Duct Tape booksTape It & Make It: 101 Duct Tape Activities (Tape It and…Duct Tape Series) and Tape It & Make More: 101 More Duct Tape Activities (Tape It and…Duct Tape Series). The Duct Tape station had the two books and Duck Brand Duct Tape (25 Random Rolls) Colored Duct Tape Multi Pack For Duct Tape Craft Wallet Decorative Designs DIY Duct Tape Bulk Set Lot. The rest of the supplies were available on the supply table. The favorite project was the heart pillow on page 38 of Tape It & Make It.
Station 5 – Baking Soda and colored vinegar
The kiddos loved this station. I purchased some spray bottles at the dollar store, a big bag of baking soda, a bottle of white vinegar, some food coloring, and a package of styrofoam plates. I put the vinegar in the spray bottle along with some food coloring. After putting a large scoop of baking soda on a plate, I let the students spray the colored vinegar on the baking soda. Several wanted to do more than one plate. They had fun watching it bubble up as well as experimenting with color mixing.
Station 6 – Origami and Paper Airplanes
This station was a repeat from the previous Maker Mania Day. It it easy to set up and the students love the paper folding and flying the airplanes. More about this station can be found on my first Maker Day post.
Station 7 – Craft Stick Science
The basis for this station was Awesome Craft Stick Science (Edge Books: Recycled Science). The only items at this station were a box of craft sticks and the book. Everything else was at the supply table. The most popular activity from this books was the harmonica found on page 18 – very simple and it worked. I’m sure some mothers weren’t very happy with the noise their children made with it after they got home.
As I mentioned in my previous post, I would not attempt an elementary Maker Day by myself. There are too many projects that need a little extra adult help. I am fortunate to have an elementary teacher and a high school student willing to help at these events.