PROFESSIONAL READING

The Elementary School Library Makerspace: A Start-Up Guide

110p. index. photos. websites. Libraries Unlimited/Teacher Ideas. Dec. 2017. Tr $40. ISBN 9781440853388.
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Cox offers accessible tips and strategies for setting up an elementary school library makerspace from scratch. She starts with a very brief history of the makerspace movement. School librarians looking to advocate for funding, staff, and space will find the justification for incorporating making into the curriculum helpful. Cox states, "You want the Makerspaces to interest all grades that your school serves." She draws concrete connections to the major content areas (science, mathematics, social studies, and language arts) and to technology, engineering, arts, and health. Finally, the author presents basic recommendations for evaluation and assessment, funding, and marketing the makerspace. "Ideas for getting started" (printable instructions that can be placed at different stations) that accompany each content area are particularly valuable. Unfortunately, the quality of the ready-made lessons is mixed and the structure of the book is haphazard, with the content areas organized in what seems to be a random order. The chapters are very short and contain only the most rudimentary information (the history portion is less than a full page).
VERDICT A secondary purchase for most librarians, although a good option for those seeking ready-made lessons that require little preparation. Better alternatives include Aaron and Colleen Graves's The Big Book of Makerspace Projects and Gary Stager and Sylvia Libow Martinez's Invent To Learn.

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