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Brilliant bagatelles

Well what would you do with a sheet of plywood and some dowel? (and an amazing D&T teacher, a brilliant RCA student and 17 children?) We were lucky enough to be back at one of our favourite places last week – the spacious and well equipped DT block at Phoenix High School.

At the end of the February camp one of regular students, Beau, asked if we could make pinball machines. Well, we didn’t really have the time to create and arcade in 3 days but David Baker came up with a plan to make the next best thing.

All 17 children were given some wood, glue and nails and a worksheet. They discussed the challenges of making their own game, planned how and where they would put their traps and came up with a theme. They measured, sawed, glued and nailed accurately and creatively to create their very own version of the traditional wooden desktop game.

Led by Adam Findlay (ex-cabinet maker and now DT teacher) and ably assisted by Monika Muller (RCA) they worked really hard both in groups and alone to solve problems and find solutions.

It was wonderful to see their ideas taking shape and by Thursday afternoon we had 17 very different bagatelles! Ranging from Batman, through PacMan, and including Night Sky and beautifully sanded and varnished wood we almost did have our own arcade!

More Design Camp fun!

We’ve just finished a fabulous half term break where we’ve been designing and making passive amplifiers with a group of 9 to 13 year old students.

We started with a simple brief – I want to hear sound from my tablet/smartphone. We looked at passive amplifiers and how they work – testing a number of shop bought items until we felt we know what we wanted to make. The children then designed their own to work with their phones or tablets. They looked at the speakers on their tech and worked out how they would place the sound channels to make the most of the music they would play.

After working on this for a day it was time to create their designs in three layers of wood. They measured, sawed, cut, stuck, clamped and sanded until they had a speakersthat was just perfect for them.

Our final few hours were spent decorating and polishing so that our finished products looked as good as they sounded!

All in all another great success – 19 very happy pupils with 19 very different passive amplifiers!

Well done to everyone!


Woodwork is back by popular demand

Excellent news for all woodworkers – we’ve added another workshop to our October half term camp. You will be designing and making your very own skateboard! And what’s more we will be teaming up with a local graffiti artist to help you decorate then in true street style. Don’t miss out. Get in touch today to reserve your place.

October DC final flyer