SCI Blog

At the Science Center of Iowa, our goal is to be a quality community resource for informal science learning where children, families, school groups and individuals of all ages come to explore science and technology.

To continue the learning outside our building, we bring you the SCI blog! Our knowledgeable staff, along with special guests and local scientists, will give you a behind-the-scenes look at SCI activities, in-depth information about science events and STEM connections in the Des Moines area.

All Posts

  • Makers talk project inspiration, the self-starter mindset and more on Twitter

    Missed Tuesday’s Iowa Maker Tweet-Up? Here’s a recap of our conversation with inventors, tinkerers and educators from across the state, featuring all things DIY and upcycling! Tweet #iamakerchat every other Tuesday from 7:00-8:00 pm through August 11 for a fun, fast-paced discussion about a new Making topic.

    Next time: Join us on Tuesday, June 30, from 7:00-8:00 pm for a discussion about the role of technology in art, Making and innovation!

    Making is all about inquiry, so naturally we started with a question:

    Why is it important to have a 'self-starter'/DIY mindset as a Maker? #iamakerchat -@SCIOWA

    If you don't have the drive, you're never going to get off the ground! #iamakerchat -@Area515DSM

    If you're not a self-starter, you probably won't end up making much. So if you are making, you are one! -@MichaelELandon

    Makers turn to a variety of resources for inspiration:

    Question time! Where do you get ideas for DIY projects? Pinterest? Blogs? Other Makers? #iamakerchat -@SCIOWA

    All of those things. Plus the drive to develop a solution to a problem or issue. -@AAMers, American Alliance of Museums

    We learned there’s no right way to start a project:

    When you get an idea, what’s the first thing you do? Sketch? Write about it? Tell a fellow Maker? #iamakerchat -@SCIOWA

    Depends on the person. Any of those things. Some of them just dive right in as soon as the idea hits their mind. #iamakerchat -@Area515DSM

    It’s OK to #MakeMistakes along the way, too…

    What’s one lesson you’ve learned through Making? #iamakerchat -@SCIOWA

    How to bounce back from failures. They’re not the end of the world. And they always make a fantastic story #iamakerchat -@baileymader

    Join us on June 30 for techie talk. Get ready to discuss your favorite gadgets and gizmos at our technology-themed #iamakerchat on Tuesday, June 30, from 7:00-8:00 pm!

  • Share your ideas at Iowa Maker Tweet-Ups all summer

    Makers from across skills and interests participated in the first-ever Iowa Maker Tweet-Up on Tuesday night, sharing their favorite projects and DIY plans for the summer. Electronics enthusiasts, artists, sculptors, educators, the American Alliance of Museums (and more!) joined the conversation. We discussed everything from the Maker mindset as a whole to specific projects and individual A-ha! moments.

    Here are a few of our favorite tweets from the inaugural #iamakerchat:

    We kicked things off with a question… In 140 characters, tell us why you’re a Maker! Why is Making important to you?

    I'm someone who wants to DIY and figure out how to fix and do on my own. Passionate about building that spirit in my students. #iamakerchat -@tcgrn, Teresa Green

    Then the American Alliance of Museums joined the fun…

    Thanks for the mention, @AAMers! What does Making mean to your organization? -@SCIOWA

    Big question! Just based on the varied skills and interests of our staff, anything from a stage set to a new garden to a community. -@AAMers

    Makers shared their latest projects!

    What’s on your must-Make list for the summer? -@SCIOWA

    My main focus this summer is marketing a circuit board I developed #iamakerchat -@MichaelELandon, Michael Landon

    Art is making. It takes math, science, spacial skills, and creativity to create a pot out of clay. -@AmandaMBarr, Amanda Barr

    We learned about the role of Making in the classroom, too.

    Work as a K-5 tech teacher / librarian and making efforts to provide making opportunities for all my kiddos and not just a few. -@tcgrn, Teresa Green

    We explored Makey Makeys, Squishy Circuits, LittleBits, and Modular Robotics as our 'jump in the water' experiences this year. -@tcgrn, Teresa Green

    Participants shared why Making is important for Iowa.

    Because if we do not encourage making today, we will have a lack of engineers tomorrow. If I can help, I'm all for it #iamakerchat-@MichaelELandon, Michael Landon

    Don’t miss the next #iamakerchat

    Missed the first Iowa Maker Tweet-Up? Join us every other Tuesday through August 11 from 7-8 pm, featuring a new focus each week! At our next #iamakerchat on Tuesday, June 16, we’re talking all things DIY and upcycling!

    Break out your best Making advice from 7:00-8:00 pm on the following Tuesdays throughout the summer:

    • June 16
    • June 30
    • July 14
    • July 28
    • August 11