Build an educational maker program that fits your budget and inspires your patrons with guidance from leaders in the field

In this 4-week online workshop, you’ll learn from library and industry experts how to build a maker program that fits your budget and fuels community engagement and lifelong learning. Guest speakers appear each week, live via web video, in interactive sessions where you can ask questions. You’ll work in small groups with facilitators experienced in the maker movement to complete assignments and field research in your library that will have your maker program up and running by the end of the course.

By the end of this course, you will:

  • Gain exposure to innovative tech companies, makers, and librarians
  • Learn from program blueprints that you can emulate
  • Create a fully developed and tested action plan for launching a maker program at your library within your budget, whether it’s $0 or much larger

Librarians, educators, and those developing programming for the community, from early learning professionals and media specialists, or those interested in facilitating maker activities will benefit from attending. Participants will walk away with tools to fuel programming and maker space planning.




QUESTIONS? Contact Us.

  • All registrants will receive access to the archived presentations from our first Maker Course held June 2015, for the duration of Maker Workshop: Fall 2015.
  • US-based registrants will receive a free littleBits Base Kit ($113 value).


WEEK 1: Wednesday, September 16, 2015 7:00-8:30 pm EDT

Getting Started with Making

Opening Keynote: How the Maker Movement Can Drive the Economy with Congressman Mark Takano

California Congressman Mark Takano, Member of Education & the Workforce, Veterans Affairs, Science, Space & Technology Committees, shares his perspective on how making has larger implications for the American economy as a driver of innovation and manufacturing.

Congressman Mark Takano (D-CA41), member of the Congressional Maker Caucus and advocate for making as the next resurgence of American manufacturing.

A National Framework for Learning and Making
The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) will provide a preview of their upcoming framework for learning in library and museum maker spaces. We’ll hear from project partner the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, which is developing a sustainable model to integrate making into schools, and learn how others can get involved.

Tim Carrigan, Senior Library Program Officer, IMLS (Institute of Museum and Library Services)
Peter Wardrip, Learning Scientist,Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, PA

WEEK 2: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 7:00-8:30 pm EDT

Projects to get You Started (Before You have a Budget)

Learn creative ways to start making today in this nuts-and-bolts session. We’ll demo fun projects—many low-cost and entry-level—for participants long on enthusiasm, but limited on money and time.

Mark Frauenfelder, Editor-in-chief, Make magazine, Founder, “Boing Boing,” and Author, Maker Dad (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014).

Hands on with Food & Gardening
We’ll explore the delights of edible making and getting our hands dirty in the garden. Food industry professionals and experienced green thumbs will cover hands-on projects to explore food and nutrition and sustainability with all ages.

Alexandra Weisman McDowell, Director of Programs and Partnerships, Spoons Across America

WEEK 3: Wednesday, October 7, 2015 7:00-8:30 pm EDT

STEAM (STEM + Art): Projects for all Ages
We’ll demo ways to involve adults and kids in projects to spark experimentation with science, technology, and art—from 3-D printing and notebook hacking to duct tape and cardboard, and much more.

Three Short Sessions:
Makerspace Tech Project Demo

Here we’ll focus on the end product: Projects library patrons can make in a tech-oriented makerspace, whether in a school or public library setting. Tech experience supervisor Nick Taylor of the Arapahoe Library District in Colorado will share projects created in the library, including a 3-D printed prosthetic, a laser cut wedding invitation, and other life-changing objects.

Nick Taylor, Supervisor, Tech Experience, Digital Services, Arapahoe Library District, CO

Getting Started With littleBits in Your Makerspace
In this demo of electronics kit littleBits, designer David Sharp will share innovative ways to get started using littleBits in a classroom or school library.

David Sharp, Product Designer, littleBits


WEEK 4: Wednesday, October 14, 2015 7:00-8:30 pm EDT

How It All Comes Together: Library Case Studies and Inspiration From Successful Maker Programs
A look at successful maker programs, with tips on how you can achieve buy-in from administrators; acquire funding;  connect with community partners; and tie your efforts to the curriculum and the goals of teachers, your library’s mission.

Make Everywhere
Embracing experiential learning, Skokie (IL) Public Library has created the BOOMbox, a unique learning space with rotating STEAM experiences. Every four months, the BOOMbox focuses on a different theme engages patrons through both self-led and class guided experimentation. Learn how staff choose topics, involve partners, get buy-in, and measure success.

Amy Holcomb, Experiential Learning Coordinator, Skokie Public Library, IL

Mikael Jacobsen, Learning Experiences Manager, Skokie Public Library, IL


“I learned a lot and I enjoyed
the flexibility of the online environment.
I would definitely recommend this to colleagues.”

— Dr. Kim Parsons, School Librarian, Fairfax County Public Schools, VA


  • Instructor-led online courses feature personalized interaction over four weeks
  • Real-time guest speakers and conversation via live webcast (with recordings available afterward)
  • Homework assignments to help you make progress on your goals
  • Individualized attention from course facilitators who work with you in a coaching environment to help sort out challenges
  • Ongoing group conversation via discussion forums
  • Articles, videos and other resources


Registration Info

littleBits Base kit


The price of a single registration for Maker Workshop is $250.00. Register 5 or more people at once and take advantage of our team builder discount: 10% off of the cost of each registration. Contact for information.

As a registered participant, you’ll also get access to The Commons, an online alumni community where librarians can share resources, make connections, and crowdsource solutions to their challenges.

[Also check out our other Live Events, Online Courses, and Webcasts.]