Author Archives: kramanathan

There is so much for young children@MFSG2016

Are you a parent coming with a child to Maker Faire Singapore? At Maker Faire, we believe that making starts very young and from the home. So what can parents and children do at Maker Faire Singapore?


At thinkspace, our community partner Ground Up Initiative will be bringing the Kampung Spirit down to Maker Faire 2016! We will be showcasing a wide variety of activities, taking you on an enlightening journey through time and its various learning techniques. These activities range from old school activities such as calligraphy and making your own medieval catapults, to modern day activities such as electronics workshops and upcycling of recycled waste materials


Just next to the Ground up initiative is the space curated by our other community partners at the Playeum. A small version of their new exhibition Hideaways, Playeum’s space will feature a bug hotel that children can build and bring home, as well as a collaborative art installation.

Drop into the dark space to join the Science Educators from the Tinkering Studio at Science Centre. Families and children will be working together to explore light and shadows using everyday items. Learn also how you can create a light box at your own home.


At Labs Central, be delighted by what parents and children from the pre school market are getting upto. Learn about how you can introduce children to Science, Tchnology, Engineering, Art and Maths through the playmaker programme and chill out in the dreamspace dome created with cardboard

At the young makers zone, catch up with some of our maker families, Rasheeda Banu and Shafeefa, Anjali and Sophia Curic, Wee Yang and Yee Chern and other families who have taken the maker mindset into the home. What projects can young children come up with, how can you, as parents and educators encourage them and create a conducive makerspace at the home to encourage the young innovators?

And then drop in at the Imagin8ors and the strawbees booths where children can construct and make to their hearts content.


For parents with young kids, especially under 12, we are in the process of developing a special workshop on 26th June 10am to 1pm. Tinker and collaborate on an arcade game, bring your game to setup a booth at the Faire for a short period. A great chance to collaborate with your youn ones and learn together. Details coming soon.

For more structured workshops, try circuit stickers or Kodu Game programming. If you would like your child to pick up a craft, drop into the craft zone or try your hands on glass mosaics

So prepare for a great rollercoaster ride, you are never too young to start Making and Tinkering at Maker Faire Singapore!

For students at Maker Faire Singapore

Are you a student or a school group visiting Maker Faire Singapore? Or a teacher looking for opportunities that the Maker movement offers for Education? Then, here are a few highlights that you should not miss.


Labs Central If you are on a time crunch, Labs Central will give you the best overview of the maker ecosystem in Singapore. From hobby makers to crafters, communities, organizations and institutes, these carefully selected group of makers will give you a great introduction to how the maker movement can influence your thinking, right from the very young.

At the young makers area, schools and families will be sharing their interactive projects. We are seeing an increasing number of young makers over the last few years, something that really heartens us. Here, teachers can drop in to find out how schools are embracing the maker culture. Parents can drop by to chat with other parents on how they incorporate Making into their everyday activities.

Interested in the role of technology in the maker movement ? From arduinos to IoT, robotics  and VR, at the techzone, you can find out how these tools can be effectively employed for projects.

Join the many free workshops happening during the Faire. Recommended for students are the many workshops happening as part of the developer track (Register at

Scratch + Makey Makey Learn to use Makey Makey and Scratch while appreciating how technology helps in creating a caring and loving living environment.

Creating an Arduino Robot Want to learn and harness the power of Electronics and Microcontrollers to create your first robot? This is the right course for you as we explore the powers of microcontroller programming and shield add-ons to control motors and read sensor inputs.

Intro Crashcourse for Hobbyists Ever wanted to learn how to get started on building interesting Arduino projects? This workshop aims to introduce the key concepts of microcontroller programming and basic electronics. No prior knowledge is required.

Hope Technik workshop (Details coming soon)

HackAble by Engineering Good Engineering Good’s HackAble workshop aims to engage participants in a hands-on learning experience to build low-cost, DIY assistive devices for persons with disabilities, while raising awareness about disabilities and how technology can enable and empower those with disabilities. The workshop will respond to the needs of disability organisations, and products made through it will be given to these organisations after the event.
At Maker Faire, participants will have an opportunity to make an adapted computer mouse that is suitable for people with disabilities.
Scratch and Tofu Piano In this short workshop, learn how to use capacitive sensing to turn regular blocks of tofu into “piano keys” that play sounds when touched.

Registration for the developers track is open at

Digigirlz by Microsoft (Details coming soon)

Register at:




Funbiestudios @ Maker Faire Singapore

Come by to see and learn about 3D Modelling, 3D Printing and Post-Processing of 3D Printing with the following: + Live Demonstration of 3D Printers + Showcase of 3D Designs used in various Designs, Crafts, Miniatures, Props and more



Nicotech @ Maker Faire SG


Nico-Tech is a community of Japanese technology geeks and developers with backgrounds in otaku culture (anime, manga, games, etc.) who gather at the video website Nico Nico Douga and share their creations with each other. They often develop intricate yet seemingly pointless gadgets, robots, and contraptions, with fun as the sole reason. Activity in Nico-Tech can sometimes spur a chain reaction of creativity, with one creation inspiring another to develop something in response.

Yarnbombing at Maker Faire Singapore

Yarnbombers cover everything with yarn – knitting, crocheting, tatting, anything goes. We will be making a picture of a Merlion from 2in yarn squares which can be knitted or crocheted. The squares will be contributed by the community of crafters in Singapore and overseas.


Sustainable Living Lab at Maker Faire Singapore 2016


(Image Source:

Sustainable Living Lab (SL2) aims to build a Sustainable Future through community building, technology experimentation and social innovation.

We help start-ups and organizations develop viable business strategies with sustainability at the heart. We promote circular economy principles, build social enterprises, organize open innovation programs and offer foresight consulting services.

We experiment, create and contextualize sustainable technologies to advance the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in South East Asia. We work primarily in the education, agricultural and waste management sector.

We work with the 3P sector to address the pervasive buy-and-throw-away culture in Singapore and the region. We use the restorative act of repair to engage in life skills development, deep community engagement and positive environmental action.

We work with individuals who are starting their journey into Sustainability by offering them a wide range of learning journeys, hands-on courses and products that expand their horizon and offer opportunities for practical & daily impact.

(information source:

Imagin8ors at Maker Faire Singapore

A group of makers passionate about child directed learning, Imagin8ors are a diverse team of makers, technologists, educators, artists who seek to nurture the imagination and creativity in each child and build a mindset, from an early age, of tinkering with technology.


They treat the child as a self-directed, natural learner and engage the parent as a coach and co-player in the child’s learning. They design creative experiences for children 3-10 years old and parents, and are building a digital app platform that helps extend the play, tinkering and child-parent bonding around learning to their homes.

Imagin8ors love to co-create with and learn from makers, artists and organizations. They also welcome opportunities to showcase other makers through their platforms.

Pre-school market at Maker Faire Singapore

A space created by Preschool Market for the young and young at heart. The concept of Preschool market Concept developed in conjunction with Sarah Lee-Wong of The Playful Parents. All children need a space to dream, imagine and play. In this space, we want to showcase DIY projects by preschools, stay-at-home mums and homeschooling families. This is a place where children are free to daydream and use their imagination to create their own play.

preschool market

Playeum @ Maker Faire Singapore

Are you bringing the very young children to Maker Faire? Playeum’s space at Maker Faire Singapore caters to children as young as 1 to explore and discover through Making, and is a snippet of what children can expect in the new Hideaways exhibition at the Children’s Centre for Creativity.


The hands-on activities invite children to explore, observe, construct, reflect, innovate and engage with nature and natural materials. Both Bug Hotel and Sheltered Hideaway will be ongoing continuously during Maker Faire Singapore

Playeum’s making activities explores insect habitats, both real and imagined. In celebration of the hands-on exhibition at Playeum’s Children’s Centre for Creativity at Gillman Barracks, Hideaways – Creating With Nature, children aged 1-12 can enjoy making a bug hotel and playing at being an insect in a constructed shelter.

Bug Hotel

Children are invited to make their own Bug Hotel using natural material provided. Bug Hotels are hollow structures created to attract a variety of insects. The hotel can be hung outside a window, and can be used as a vantage viewpoint to observe the small creatures, once they will have settled into it. $3/ child to cover the cost of materials

Sheltered hideaway

Using banana and palm leaves, fronds and other foliage, children can collaboratively help to decorate a simple standing structure made of bamboo sticks to create their own sheltered hideaway. Free

Creating a makerspace in school

Recently, we have had a number of requests from schools to get inspiration on creating a school makerspace and the kind of tools and activities to stock the space with. Having facilitated a number of activities for children, we put together a programme for teachers on setting up a space to facilitate the development of the maker mindset in students.

When we talk about the maker movement, we often associate it with high tech tools such as arduinos, Little Bits, Computing, Programming etc, or with skills such as soldering, wood working etc, which are skills commonly taught in Design and Technology programmes. This could be because a number of websites talking about the maker movement talks has a long list of projects and activities. Great examples of such websites include Makezine, Instructables, the Tinkering studio blog etc.

One thing that we like to stress is that Making is not a set of skills. Making is a mindset. To take it from the words of Dale Dougherty, Founder of Makezine and MakerFaire, maker movement aims to
• to create a context that develops the maker mindset, a growth mindset that encourages students to believe they can learn to do anything;
• to design and develop makerspaces in a variety of community contexts that serve a diverse group of learners who do not all share the same resources;
• to identify, develop, and share a broad framework of projects and kits, based on a wide range of tools and materials, that connect to student interests in and out of school;
• to develop programs especially for young people that allow them to take a leading role in creating more makers in schools, afterschool programs, summer camps, and other community settings;
• to create a community context for the exhibition and curating of student work in relationship with all makers and making, such that new opportunities are created for more people to participate;
• to allow individuals and groups to build a record of participation in the maker community, which can be useful for academic and career advancement as well as support the student’s growing sense of personal development;

Kickstarting a maker movement in schools therefore is a combination of skills and mindsets, where students are given open ended challenges, but also the opportunity for masterclasses where they can pick up the relevant skills from the internet, their peers or from the makerspace facilitators.

So, when we had the opportunity to extend a training programme for teachers from Tampines Secondary on growing the maker mindset in their students, we split the programme into two parts – a master class on Arduino which was conducted by the facilitators at CRADLE and a one day programme to share toughts and ideas for suitable activities to promote the maker mindset.

We began with the Marshmallow Challenge, where the teachers worked in teams to construct a free standing structure with spagetti, tape and string.

Often, when we talk about the Maker movement, we talk about the power of experiences in inculcating learning – the more experiences you have, the more you learn. The Marshmallow challenge is a perfect way to illustrate the importance of experience (Watch the TED talk, it is pretty cool!). The tallest structure that we got was made by our two interns who had joined the training. To us it was clear why, Niha, one of the interns, had spent the last couple of weeks building tetrahedrons from wooden skewers for a Sierpinsky fractal.

After the marshmallow challenge, we moved on to everyone’s favorite tech toy – the Makey Makey. To ensure variation, the teams had challenges to work on – like make a musical instrument and make a fencing game.

We loved the fencing costume that a team of teachers put together. The creativity, sense of humor and enthusiasm was rather infectious.

Post lunch, we had a couple of basic circuit and electronic hacking activities.One of which was inspired by the Booby trap activity in Maker Camp Fall edition. An important takeaway from this activity was the use of familiar materials in unfamiliar ways and throwing yourself in uncomfortable situations, both of which are core tenets of the maker mindset. A group of teachers built their circuit in traditional (school) way with crocodile clips and the likes. We then challenged them to substitute the materials with the usual circuit sticker materials – copper tape, coin batteries etc. I think it was rather eye opening to the teachers that substitution of materials required a different level of troubleshooting.

We hope that the teachers will find ways to implement the maker mindset through programmes and activities in their school. We look forward to hearing from them on updates


Slides: PD workshop_schools