Maker Boot Camp Strengthens Skills

May 30, 2019

Maker Boot Camp Strengthens Skills of Regional Educators

Amazeum professional development supports interactive, engaging classrooms


BENTONVILLE, Ark. (May 29, 2019) — Professional development for regional educators takes on an Amazeum-twist during Maker Boot Camp June 4 – 7 at the Scott Family Amazeum. Participating educators engage in four days of activities designed to support facilitating thinking creatively, working collaboratively, finding solutions, and presenting problems that develop 21st-century skills in students.

Teachers become learners as they discover the value of incorporating making and tinkering in an educational setting. Under the guidance of Amazeum education and fabrication team members, teachers in Maker Boot Camp create and learn like kids their classrooms. More educators are discovering the value of incorporating hands-on, inquiry-driven, experiential learning in classrooms or school maker spaces as a way to strengthen critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, communication, and cooperation.

“We developed Maker Boot Camp to give educators the opportunity to advance their maker skills, whether they wanted to personally become more proficient or better understand the process to support student learning,” says Mindy Porter, Director of Education at the Amazeum. “When educators actively participate in process-focused, hands-on workshops with a wide range of making and tinkering activities, they are likely to incorporate similar activities into their students’ experience. At the Amazeum, we facilitate adult learning the same way we do with children. We want adults to have those same ‘a-ha moments’ of inspiration as kids do – that’s when learning sticks. One difference is that with adults, we are more deliberate in explaining why tinkering is a valuable learning process that can be applied to a variety of subjects.”

Maker Boot Camp offers educators authentic, relevant experience in integrating STEAM into classrooms. Early exposure to hands-on STEAM experiences is often cited as one of the greatest factors of whether children continue to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, art and math. Educators who incorporate STEAM at school provide students with opportunities to experiment, practice the iterative process when things do not work as planned and develop valuable problem-solving skills.

Throughout the week, educators gain practical and theoretical experience in tinkering and making with digital tools, woodworking tools, and diverse materials in the museum’s Fabrication Shop and 3M Tinkering Hub. The culminating experience for the week is a chain reaction created by participants scheduled for 2:30 pm Friday, June 7.


                        What: Maker Boot Camp

                        Where: The Scott Family Amazeum

                        When: 9 am to 12 pm, 1 to 3 pm, June 4 to 7, 2019

                        Educator created chain reaction scheduled for 2:30 pm Friday, June 7, 2019.




About the Scott Family Amazeum

The Scott Family Amazeum is a hands-on, interactive, STEAM-focused museum for children and families in Northwest Arkansas. Located at the intersection of J Street and Museum Way in Bentonville, the Amazeum experiences include a climbable tree canopy, indoor cave, the 3M Tinkering Hub, and nearly one acre of outdoor space. For more information about the museum, visit


*Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math.