“It’s fooling around directly with phenomena, with tools and materials. It’s thinking with your hands and learning through doing. It’s slowing down and getting curious about the mechanics and mysteries of everyday stuff around you. It’s whimsical, enjoyable, fraught with dead ends, frustrating, and, ultimately, about inquiry.” (Wilkinson & Petrich, The Art of Tinkering, 2014).
Tinker Spaces can also be referred to as Maker Spaces and STEM or STEAM rooms. In this space participants are invited to tinker, experiment, build, take apart, investigate and create things.
- Adult citizens
- Children 3-6
- Children 7-12
You can do it with all those groups, but we did it with professionals from different fields like public engagement or the cultural and creative sector.
Tinkering is a proven playful and effective way to improve the attractiveness of, attainment in, and lifelong relationship with, science and technology for adults, teenagers and students.
- Think about what game, experiment, or materials you want to provide for your audeince to tinker with.
- Decide on a venue.
- Consider what materials or technical requirements you need, perhaps ask local organisations to contribute old tools and materials that can be used in your tinkering space.
- Consider your audience, the tools and materials that are provided to young children will be different to those provided at an event aimed at teenagers or adults.
- It may be necessary to have an expert present who knows how to use the tools safely.
- Promote your activity
Get in touch with the communities of tinkers.