K-12 Maker Workshops

New series of Summer K-12 Maker Workshops: 
July 16 - July 20
Register online here!

Makerspace Tools, Skills, and Operations 

Makerspaces are workshops with an emphasis on creativity, collaboration, and community in which students can experiment with new tools, develop skills, and become empowered innovators and designers. We have designed this series of workshops to meet the needs of K-12 educators setting up a new Makerspace or aiming to use an existing space more effectively.  All sessions are one-day hands-on experiences where participants explore resources, develop skills, and experiment with projects appropriate for the classroom.

Who should attend:

These workshops are for educators setting up school Makerspaces, learning effective ways to use maker technologies, and/or developing technical skills. The workshops are appropriate for teachers of students from grades 4 – 12, and who have tools and materials ranging from portable carts to fledgling makerspaces to full-blown shops.

What you will learn:

Our staff members are experienced educators passionate about the opportunities that maker technologies brings to the classroom. We emphasize hands-on practice and teach each technology through a simple maker project. Participants will leave with confidence, skills, resources, and ideas on how to use maker tools, as well as ideas on incorporating the technologies into the classroom. 


Monday, July 16: 3-D Modeling and Printing, Basic

Learn and practice design for 3-D printing, solid modeling (Tinkercad or similar introductory program); explore components, function, materials, and effective use of 3-D printer; and review and discuss project samples.


Tuesday, July 17: Laser Cutter, Vinyl Cutter and 2-D Modeling, Basic

Learn and practice design for laser etching and cutting, design for vinyl/craft cutters, 2-D vector modelling (Inkscape, Gravit, or similar program); explore components, function, materials, and effective use of laser and vinyl cutters; and review and discuss project samples.


Wednesday, July 18: Designing and Operating a Makerspace, with Shop Tool Training

Explore resources for design, layout, and safe operation of a Makerspace; receive instruction and practice with tools and materials (including a variety of manual and power tools, materials, and fasteners); and review and discuss project samples.


Thursday, July 19: Electronics, Basic

Learn and practice principles of electricity, series and parallel circuits, switches, LEDs, buzzers, wiring materials, soldering, component selection, multi-meters, tools, and techniques; and review and discuss project samples.


Friday, July 20: Arduino Programming, Basic

Get introduced to the Arduino microcontroller capabilities and programming environment; learn and practice coding basics; explore interfacing with basic input devices (such as photocells, light temperature, distance sensors) and output devices (such as servo motors, neopixels, LEDs, speakers); and review and discuss project samples.


Registration and Payment

The cost for each workshop is $275 per person and includes all materials and supplies for projects. Coffee, snacks, and lunch are included. Participants should bring their own laptops and will have access to WiFi. Computer mice are recommended for some of the software packages.

Attendance for each workshop is limited to 18 participants.  Registration is processed on a first-come, first-served basis, and is guaranteed once final payment is received. Payment can be made online by credit card, or by purchase order, check, or money order made out to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Our mailing address is:
MIT Edgerton Center, Attn. Sandra Lipnoski,
77 Massachusetts Ave.,
Room 4-408,
Cambridge, MA  02139

Questions? Email Diane Brancazio at dianeb@mit.edu


Transportation, Parking, and Schedule Notes

Each class is one day, meeting from 9:00 am to 2:30 pm with a half-hour lunch break.  Coffee/snacks will be available at 8:30 am.

Workshops are held in the historic MIT Edgerton Center Student Project Lab (4-409) in Strobe Alley, a scene of experiential learning activities for decades. This is the 4th floor of building 4, nearly under the Great Dome. Visit the MIT Edgerton Center transportation and parking page for information on getting to MIT.  Visitor parking in the MIT-Kresge parking lot is limited. Parking permits can be requested and purchased online five business days in advance.


About the MIT Edgerton Center

Established in 1992, the MIT Edgerton Center continues the hands-on legacy of Harold “Doc” Edgerton by giving students opportunities to learn by doing. Programs include courses in engineering and high-speed photography for MIT students and professionals, the international-development program D-Lab, student-run clubs and teams, student machine shops, and a year-round K-12 science and engineering outreach program, including professional-development teacher workshops and curriculum materials. Read more about our K-12 programs here.


Workshop Staff

The workshop is developed and led by Diane Brancazio, with invaluable assistance from Leilani Roser, Chris Mayer, and a team of experts at the MIT Edgerton Center.

Diane Brancazio: Lead Maker Educator

Diane is passionate about the potential of Makerspaces to improve education.  She works intensively to support teachers integrating maker into their regular curriculum and in using makerspaces to engage and empower students.  She initiated and is leading a program to develop a methodology for K-12 teachers to design and implement Maker activities in core curriculum.  She manages the Edgerton Student Project Lab as a Makerspace for MIT students with student mentors and student-led training.

Her formal technical training includes a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Princeton University and a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from MIT.  Working as a product design consultant at several engineering companies, she developed skills in creative problem solving, project management, and fabrication. Diane went into education as a career after serving as an instructor for summer programs at the Edgerton Center. She has now returned with 15 years of experience in teaching technology and engineering design, computer science, and general science in public middle and high-school classrooms.

Along with Ed Moriarty, Diane also teaches a popular freshman advising seminar entitled “Engineering, Art, and Science."

Leilani Roser: Maker Educator

Leilani Roser has worked in STEM education as a teacher and consultant since 2009, including 3 years teaching Biology in Boston Public Schools. At the Edgerton Center, she works with Diane as a teacher coach, resource developer, and resident dinosaur artist. When not in the Makerspace, she can be found teaching drums at Girls Rock Campaign Boston.

Sarah Leadbeater

Sarah graduated from Syracuse University in 2001 with a degree in industrial design and worked professionally as both an industrial designer and a web designer for a few years prior to becoming a teacher.  

For the last twelve years she has been a member of the technology and engineering faculty at Newburyport High School in Newburyport MA where she teaches a range of subjects including robotics, web design, industrial design, CAD, and computer programming.

Her engineering students participate in a number of extracurricular activities including the Sailbot Robotics Competition which asks students to design and build an autonomous sailing boat, and the Real World Design Challenge, a yearly aeronautical engineering competition that asks students to use CAD and analysis software to solve real world problems.

In addition to her full time career, she is currently working on a master’s degree in Interaction Design at Northeastern University.

In 2013 she was honored by the Massachusetts Technology Education/Engineering Collaborative (Masstec) as their Teacher of the Year. 

Beth Lloyd

Beth is interested in universal design for learning and design thinking as they apply to maker spaces and uses these principles to develop spaces and activities accessible to all.

She graduated from Tufts University 40 years ago with a degree in occupational therapy and spent most of her career working as an OT in schools, aka, a MacGyver of school participation of sorts. In 2014, Beth joined her husband on a sabbatical.  After walking the Camino in Spain for a month, they moved to the south side of Chicago.  It was there that she discovered the Maker Lab at the Harold Washington Library and began to taking workshops in digital fabrication as well as felt ball making.

She volunteered at the Fab Lab at the Museum of Science and Industry and learned the workings of a this particular type of maker space. Currently, she is the Innovation Specialist for Watertown Public Schools.  She has been involved in the evolution of making in her district.  She runs the WHS Wayshak Fab Lab at the high school library and continues to spread the making culture district wide.  Beth sees first hand the power of creation in the eyes and hands of her students and colleagues.Technical experts on the Edgerton Center staff

Edgerton Center staff

Workshops will have the assistance of several Edgerton Center staff members who are skilled in digital fabrication tools, hand tools, electronics, and microcomputers.