Materials SelectionThis Wednesday, March 8,  thirteen students in Stan Mercer’s Makerspace class at Creswell Middle School visited the Planet Improvement Center to select materials for BRING’s inaugural Product Design Challenge. Separating into three design teams, the students sifted through tables and bins full of dusty ceiling fans, dull door knobs, old spark plugs, porcelain toilet covers, green plastic siding, broken doors, and more. Their mission: find materials that inspire them to make something new from old.

Materials Selection 2Each group discussed the possibilities, talked strategy, and made its ultimate selections: a rusty filing cabinet, a discarded piece of kitchen cabinetry, a mailbox, a few fan blades, and assorted pieces of wood. After the selections process, the students ventured into the Planet Improvement Center for more materials shopping with additional BRING credits.

Materials Selection 5Makerspaces provide hands-on creative ways to encourage students to experiment, build, and invent as they engage with designing and engineering concepts. For the next seven weeks, these local middle schoolers will design, tinker, hack, cut, and weld as they build new, consumer-worthy products from salvaged materials found at BRING.

Materials Selection 3Their completed projects will be on display at St. Vincent de Paul’s fourth annual Metamorphose Earth Day celebration on Saturday, April 22. And we can’t wait to see what they come up with!


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