I want to begin by recognizing the many people in addition to Jane and Sam that our invitation recognizes. Thanks to:
- BPC students in our Maker Club for setting us up for success early in the year, successfully presenting at the East Bay Mini-Maker Faire and the Bay Area Science Festival, both in the fall of 2013.
- The entire BPC Class of 2015 for their enthusiastic participation in our 7th grade field trip to the Advanced Light Source (ALS) in November 2013.
- Dula Parkinson, Beamline Scientist, for patiently mentoring me during my IISME summer 2013 internship and having the vision to design and implement our November 2013 ALS experience, as well as his continued support through the data analysis / printing process.
- Howard Padmore, BPC parent and ALS Division Deputy for Experimental Systems Group, for his role in organizing the 7th grade trip, as well as his encouragement to apply to the White House Maker Faire.
- Justin Blair, scientist, for his help with data visualization and his 3D printer assistance.
- The Maker Club (again) for a very successful debut at the San Mateo Maker Faire in May 2014, especially to those 7th graders (Flynn, Abe, Alexander, Jane, Daniel, Sam, Kyra and Emily) who volunteered their time at our booth. Also, Gigi, Alex, and Luka (all 6th grade) and Isaac (8th grade) for their help.
- Brook Drumm, founder and CEO of Printrbot, for helping us initially get involved with 3D printing, as well as his continued generosity and support over the years.
- Finally, those BPC students who spent long, sometimes frustrating hours with our initial 3D printer back in 2010, which was far more finicky that our current machines: especially Adam (BPC Class of 2013) and Cole, Noah and Daniel (BPC Class of 2014)
I am sure we are leaving folks off this list, but the point is that the kids (and their teacher!) did not accomplish this on their own and we are grateful for the opportunities for collaboration we have experienced along the way.
The excitement began exactly one week before the Maker Faire. We received the email (below) 6 days prior to the event with scant details beyond we were invited and the event would occur sometime on Wednesday, June 18th. In addition, we were asked not to discuss our participation until the morning of the event. I've since learned this is how things roll with White House Events.
Two days before the Faire, we received clarification that as "honored makers" we were able to attend the event, but we would not be presenting our project. Well, that certainly made packing easier!
Once the event was underway, we were thrilled to learn that President Obama officially declared June 18th a National Day of Making! Watch his speech below (or read the text here.)
There were about 30 makers set up throughout the White House's east wing. Some of our favorites included MaKey MaKey, Squishy Circuits, the crowd-pleasing Robotic Giraffe, and LittleBits.
- MAKE Magazine, 7th Grade Students Show Off 3D Printing Project at White House (6.18.14)
- Berkeleyside, Berkeley 7th graders present 3-D project at White House (6.18.14)
- SFGate, Bay Area creators strut stuff at White House Maker Faire (6.19.14)
- 3D Printer World, 7th Grade Makers Invited to White House Maker Faire (6.21.14)