By Sandra Emerson Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Calif.
WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) The "Lightspeed Makerspace" workshop features Minecraft programming, coding and elementary circuitry, sewing machines, virtual reality, and computer-aided design. It is open to anyone with a library card."
Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Calif.
The Ovitt Family Community Library in Ontario now has a space for makers of all ages.
The Lightspeed Makerspace opened Wednesday, Aug. 15, to a crowd of students and their families excited to work with 3D printers, a laser cutter, electronics and circuits, robotics and other high-tech equipment.
"Teens can learn how to operate robots through coding," Councilwoman Debra Dorst-Porada said. "Small business entrepreneurs can use a 3D printer to make a prototype of a product they want to bring to market and artists can design three dimensional objects and print them using a laser cutter."
Lightspeed Makerspace is a workshop designed to cater to a variety of interests. Developed using a mix of grant funding, donations and city funds, the workshop features Minecraft programming, coding and elementary circuitry, sewing machines, virtual reality, and computer-aided design.
It is open to anyone with a library card.
The workshop aligns with similar spaces and curriculum offered to students in the Ontario-Montclair School District, Superintendent James Hammond said.
"This offers an opportunity for someone who has an interest in science, technology, engineering and math to come to the library, a public facility, and have access to things that happen during the school day and get an extended learning opportunity," he said.
Christopher Catuara, the school district's coordinator of instructional technology and member of the Lightspeed Makerspace advisory committee, said engaging students with STEM technology gets them thinking about real-life applications and makes them better problem-solvers.
"When they're doing activities like this, they're motivated," he said. "They're engaged, but they're practicing perseverance. All of this stuff you can't just do it once. You have to go over and over again. That kind of mentality transfers into when you're working on a tough math problem or having trouble coming up with a line in a poem."
The addition of the space helps the city in its efforts to revitalize downtown and develop innovative thinkers for the future, Dorst-Porada said.
"We're constantly looking for ways to get Fortune 500 companies to come to Ontario and we're hoping that this helps," Dorst-Porada said. "Through enhancing city facilities like this, we continue to build and improve upon our city's amenities."
The Lightspeed Makerspace is open from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. Mondays and Thursdays; and from 1 to 5 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. It is closed Fridays and Sundays. The library is at 215 E. C St. in Ontario.