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Minutes from Meeting April 4, 2013

We met at the Anchor pub for good drink and conversation and were actually quite productive!


- Brian Corteil

- Ward Hills

- Steve Upton

- Chris Voth

- Meg Westbury

- Nigel Westbury


- How run each morning?: We discussed that there should be a main facilitator for each morning who comes up with the project and thinks through how to offer it logically to the kids. A basic morning would probably consist of 1) safety brief; 2) introduction to the project; 3) the project (maybe for 1 hour); 4) break with snacks; 5) show-and-tell session where the kids could talk about the project and discuss future projects.

- List of first month's projects: 1) paper airplanes, 2) egg drop, 3) crane lift (from Engineering outreach site) 4) solar powered robots. The idea behind the list was to provide low-budget, simple but fun projects so that the families could get to know each other and start discussing more complicated projects for down the road.

- Risk assessment: We decided that we would start with Makespace's risk assessment and modify as necessary.

- PIP for kids: Brian is looking into getting safety glasses, non-latex gloves, work gloves, aprons and possibly lab coats (for fun) that the kids could later decorate.

- Prizes: We decided that in general, we wouldn't offer big prizes for 'best' projects (so as not to stifle creativity) but would instead offer token prizes to reward effort, originality and teamwork.

- Fees: We decided that families would donate £3 per morning to help defray costs.

- Group email: We discussed setting up a Google group just for family maker mornings

- Blog: We discussed setting up a blog just for family maker mornings, but connected to the main Makespace website

- Discussion with Elizabeth from STEM-East: Steve, Johnny and Meg had a phone conversation with STEM-East to see if they might have funding for us. They do not, but they offered some good suggestions:

1) Down the road, possibly have family maker mornings run by STEM ambassadors (which we would become), as STEM takes care of CRB checks and insurance and lends credibility to our programme

2) Keep a register of all the kids attending (names, ages, and school attend) because that will help STEM know which schools might be interested in setting up a STEM club

3) Makespace might be able to work with STEM to train teachers to run STEM clubs or, alternatively...

4) Makespace might be able to host STEM clubs down the road

5) Our participation in (and winning) competitions such as the Science Xchange (run by the Cambridge Science Centre) chain-reaction machine would give us credibility and publicity

6) We can seek a status from a national organisation (we couldn't remember the name), that certifies we are a good science group for kids, again which gives us credibility

7) Elizabeth has templates for risk assesments and curriculum design that she can share with us

- Ongoing committee meetings: We decided that we would hold a meeting on Thursday 18 April after our first Family Makers morning to assess how things are going

Action Items:

- Need to get token 'prizes' for each day

- Need to pull together binders for the kids - put rules page first

- Need to get a register notebook

- Brian to look into risk assessment

- Brian to look into Google group and blog

- Steve check with his kids' school to see what photo release procedure they use

- Steve to check with Elizabeth from STEM-East about the templates for risk assessments and curriculum

To do at meeting 7 April (Sunday)

- Decide on rota of facilitators for first month

- Discuss supplies for paper airplans project (paper, straws, tape, cartridge paper, felt tip pens were mentioned)

- Make a list of the rules for family maker mornings