I've been mulling over my MakerSpace idea today and wondering if I'm on the right track? I'm proposing to run it within/as a course. Because the physical space exists; because there's an existing framework in which it can run; because it works around inner-school politics. My goal for this has always been to provide opportunities for students who are disengaged to come to school as well as to provide collaboration opportunities for a diverse population - not as easy as it sounds when students are streamed according to their post-secondary pathway. An after-school Makerspace won't be effective for my target group - they don't come to school when they're supposed to, never mind 'after hours'.
And today, I was reading George Couros' book, The Innovator's Mindset: Empower Learning, Unleash Talent, and Lead a Culture of Creativity and he distinguishes between engagement and empowerment in citing Bill Ferriter: "Engaging students means getting kids excited about OUR content, interests, curricula; empowering students means giving kids the knowledge and skills to pursue THEIR passions, interests, future (Kids need to be empowered NOT engaged)."
And so, my vision is articulated along these lines. My target group needs to be empowered to create and expand and set their own path so that they can be engaged. My vision (when realized) will do that! So, thanks @gcouros!
I am on the right track!