Make a Difference Series

Monicah Fratena February 20, 2018

The Make a Difference series of projects will provide an opportunity for teens to serve the community using makerspace technology. The teens will develop technology skills while also gaining a sense of community pride and ownership. Our teens suggested different ways to "make a difference" in our community, which became the series of final projects.

-Make Chew Toys for animals in local shelters.

-Build prosthetic hands using our 3D printers. 

-Build bicycles for local foster children.

-Design light up cards for our homebound library customers.

-Crochet small blankets for babies staying in the NICU at the Children's Hospital.

-Build mini puzzles for hospital patients using our 3D printers.

-Assemble bracelets that demonstrate our support of the LGBTQ+ community, which will be distributed at the local high school.

Type: Active
Age: Middle school
Optimal size: 20+
Estimated cost: $100+
Planning time: 5+ hours
Frequency: Monthly

Learning outcomes

Participants will learn how to use a 3D printer, how to build circuits using LED lights and copper tape, how to crochet and braid, and how to use various tools such as wrenches, air pumps, screwdrivers. Participants will have the opportunity to have positive interactions with adult volunteers in a comfortable learning environment. Students will develop empathy for various members of society and also gain a sense of belonging in their community through these projects.


We will use several resources for how to complete each project, including Instructables for the chew toys and bracelets, Thingiverse for the 3D mini puzzle designs. We will also use the expertise of organizations such as Enabling the Future for the prosthetic hands and Together We Rise for the bicycle assembly.


This is an ongoing series, so evaluation will be completed at the end of the project. The teens are enthusiastic about each element, however, and are excited to get started. 

Other resources

Below are instructions and additional resources for the Make a Difference Projects.

Chew Toy Tutorial

Prosthetic Hands

Pride Bracelet Tutorial

3D Printed Mini Puzzle

Bicycle Build 

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