Monday, March 14, 2011

STEM Workshop & Guitar Building

The second week of January I had the opportunity to take a STEM workshop at my high school. This program, funded by the National Science Foundation, was created to get kids excited about science, math and tech ed through building their own custom guitars. I was only one of three women in the workshop and the only social studies teacher. I definitely felt out of my element, but I was willing to challenge myself and try something new.

The workshop was all day on a Saturday and then ran the next week Monday-Thursday for six hours every evening. It was a brutal schedule on top of teaching all day. To make matters worse I got really sick. Given that the foundation was paying for our time and we got to build super cool guitars I showed up everyday to finish the guitar. The workshop made me wish that I taught science so I could demonstrate some of the exciting information I learned. Of course the biggest thrill was the gorgeous guitar I made.

I achieved a two 'firsts' through this workshop; first use of power tools and first time soldering. The guys in the workshop were very helpful and were always willing to step in to show me how to use one of the machines or to make sure I was doing something correctly. My guitar is not perfect, but I embrace all the little imperfections.

Now the next phase, learning how to play it. I plan on taking lessons this summer. Enjoy the photos.

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