Sunday, October 22, 2017

The Hack Shack and all the Little Bits that have improved over my time with it

Coleman Moore
Hack Shack Supervisor
The Hack Shack and all the Little Bits that have improved over my time with it

Throughout my time as a student at Oyster River High School, the Hack Shack has changed a lot from its creation in my sophomore year to a bustling and overall more well put together setting now during my senior year. At the beginning of its existence it had no reputation nor did anyone know about it.  From its creation to now, it's grown a lot and so has the class that manages the space.
When I came to the high school as a freshman there was no Hack Shack so I won't talk about this year too much but I still feel it's very important to the overall story. Back when there was no Hack Shack a lot of students had very few options if they were interested in technology other than the two programming classes and the robotics team. Many teachers either had to send a workorder to IT or search out Mrs. Pearce or Mrs Stetson, Our librarian and computer Science teacher respectively, if they had a teach related problem a problem the Hack Shack greatly fixed.
At the beginning of my sophomore year Mrs. Carr and Mrs. Pearce opened the Hack Shack as our high school's very own Makerspace. Word of the new makerspace spread fast through the school newspaper, Mouth Of the River, and other websites and publications such as NHSTE. During my sophomore year, not many people completely understood what the Hack Shack was for, including the staff that ran it. At this point we depended a lot on the librarians to tell students who were having tech problems to go see the Hack Shack to solve them. Throughout the year the staff got into much more of a flow and were able to help those who came in successfully more often.
When it came time for my Junior year I was no longer part of staff but I still came in often to check up on what was going on. Some of the most incredible 3D prints were made during that year.

It was also during this year that the Hack Shack began to be used more often for projects for classes than it had in the past and to build a real reputation for itself and why it was there.
Now we have entered the 3rd year of the Hack Shack and my senior year. This year rather than being a normal staff member, I instead supervise the staff, helping them with their workshops and how to go about working in the Hack Shack. My duties also include getting information from the staff to Mrs. Pearce and Mrs. Stetson and working on a special project for the semester. At the beginning of this year, Mrs. Stetson bought a new computerized cutter called the Cricut which has been a huge upgrade to the former one, the Silhouette cutter. Because of its simplicity and more easily understandable UI, more people have been able to create designs and print them then before. The format of the work done by normal staff has also greatly changed this year increasing the transparency between the staff, me, Mrs Pearce and Mrs. Stetson.
20170928_074422.jpgAll in all I think the Oyster River Makerspace Hack Shack has made a lot of progress and will continue to improve and grow to become even more embedded in the school culture. I hope it will continue to become someplace that everyone goes to to use the technology, learn new thing or just to enjoy themselves in a supportive place.

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