Derek Werderitch, Children's Museum of Pittsburgh, instructs a woodshop program at West Liberty University's MAKESHOP Boot Camp.

Derek Werderitch, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, instructs a woodshop program at West Liberty University’s MAKESHOP Boot Camp.

Professional educators enjoyed a creative camp-like program this June at West Liberty University’s Center for Arts & Education as the MAKESHOP® Educators Program with the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh visited campus, June 23, 24 and 25.

Funded by the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, the program welcomed 24 participants, including WLU College of Education seniors and graduate students, alumni who are employed as teachers, and other professional educators. It met in the Center for Arts & Education, located in Main Hall.

The Mobile MAKESHOP Boot Camp included hands-on experiences and discussion to equip them with the skills and knowledge that is necessary to be a maker, according to Lou Karas, director of the Center for Arts & Education.

Participants engaged in open-ended activities that ranged from sewing to woodworking, electronics to digital-based making and more. Day one included topics like computational thinking and stop-motion animation and apps; day two included advanced wood and fiber workshops; day three featured take apart, circuit blocks, eTextiles and physical computing. The final day included a field trip to the MAKESHOP at the Children’s Museum of Pittsbugh.

“The goal of the boot camp is to empower educators to create sustainable models for integrating open-ended making experiences into schools, libraries and community centers.,” said Bill Schlageter, director of marketing at the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh

MAKESHOP® at Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh is a space for children and families to make, play and design using “real stuff”— the same materials, tools, and processes used by professional artists, builders, programmers, and creators of all kinds.

Located in Rm. 133 (West Wing), of Main Hall, West Liberty University’s Center for Arts & Education is a colorful busy place for students. Featuring hands-on learning and resources that integrate the arts, creativity and technology, it provides professional development programs and resources to educators, students and others working in community and school settings.

For more information on WLU’s Center for Arts & Education, please contact Karas at [email protected] or 304-336-8162.