The Makings of Maker Spaces, Part 1: Space for Creation, Not Just Consumption
Maker spaces in libraries are the latest step in the evolving debate over what public libraries’ core mission is or should be. From collecting in an era of scarce resources to curation in an era of overabundant ones, some libraries are moving to incorporate cocreation: providing the tools to help patrons produce their own works of art or information and sometimes also collecting the results to share with other members of the community. Maker spaces promote learning through play; have the potential to demystify science, math, technology, and engineering; and encourage women and underrepresented minorities to seek careers in those fields. They also tie in to the growing trend of indie artists in every medium—including books—who are bypassing traditional gatekeepers, taking advantage of new tools to produce professionally polished products, and going direct to the web to seek an audience. Libraries around the United States offer tools for patrons to learn by doingBy Lauren Britton R.