127K Makers, 2513 Events, 86 Countries, and One Party That Just Won’t Quit

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This week we celebrate the record-breaking 2,513 events in 86 countries that made up Maker Party 2014.

All told, our more than 300 organizational partners and hundreds of individual event hosts shared valuable digital literacy skills with nearly 130,000 adults and children during the two-month campaign.

Whether hacking on mobile apps with Appmaker, discussing the nuances of net neutrality during our global teach-in, or turning libraries into full-fledged maker spaces, this year’s crop of Maker Parties unleashed the creativity of our incredible community of web makers.

Maker Party Surabaya, Indonesia

Maker Party Surabaya, Indonesia

Maker Party Brasil (photo credit @Coregem)

Maker Party Brasil (photo credit @Coragem)

Maker Party Iran

Maker Party Iran

Maker Party 2014 was truly a global celebration, with events in Argentina, Canada, Jordan, Uganda, Spain, and Japan, among dozens of other countries. We celebrated places like India that blew us away with more than 250 events, and were thrilled to see countries such as New Zealand, Iran, and Sweden hold their first ever Maker Party events.

makerparty_postparty_infographic_static_vertical_v2The Party Doesn’t Stop

Just because Maker Party 2014 is over doesn’t mean that the party has to end. In fact, it’s more important than ever that we continue to learn and share Web literacy skills with our friends, family members, students, peers, and broader communities. Learning the mechanics, culture and citizenship of the web is as crucial to success today as reading and math were 100 years ago.

Thanks to you, Maker Party 2014 made a hugely significant contribution to global Web literacy, and inspired tens of thousands of enthusiastic web makers.

“Maker Party time is a fun time, be it two or fifty persons. I think the utmost thrill to makers is learning something new, something that allows them to be expressive and contributors of the web and not just consumers. They soon get to find out that they can utilize the web for their good, and that their voices can be heard all over the globe from just their laptop. This is the spirit I think, binds all makers all over the world. ”

- Richard Nworah (Trek Afrique)

“This is a great opportunity to learn, teach, inspire, motivate, grow, build, network, and to form an amazing community of doers! We are so thrilled and energized from this event that we already have plans in place for more events!”

- Kamila Stephniowska (COO of Geek Girls Carrots)

“Maker Party is such a great way to connect with the community and celebrate learning through play and making.”

- Jess Weichler (MakerBox)

We can’t thank this community enough for championing the cause of Web literacy and making sure that Maker Party 2014 smashed records along the way. Whether you organized a massive Maker Party event on your campus, or taught your children a bit of HTML around the kitchen table, we are inspired by what you’ve accomplished.

Get Involved

 

  • Don’t forget to claim your Skill Sharer Badge if you taught someone a new skill during Maker Party.
  • Inspired by the incredible Maker Party mentors and teachers? Host an event. We’ve got detailed resources to show you how.
  • Join us at MozFest, in London on October 24th – 26th to engage in a conversation about how the web can do more, and do better.

MozFest 2014: Spotlight on “Web in Your Pocket”

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This is the second post in a series featuring interviews with the 2014 Mozilla Festival “Space Wranglers,” the curators of the many exciting programmatic tracks slated for this year’s Festival.

For this edition, we chatted with Bobby Richter, the Space Wrangler for the Web in Your Pocket track. Participants in this track will explore opportunities in the booming world of the open web on mobile. They’ll also experiment and tinker to customize their own experience on their phones.

What excites you most about your track? 
The sheer amount of Appmaking! We’ve got a Megabooth specifically for making apps—no matter whether it’s your first time, third time, twentieth time, or millionth time! We’ll feature all sorts of interesting app-creation methods from around the internet and around the world. Of course, the supplementary in-depth content is nothing to scoff at—we’ll be brainstorming about all facets of the future of mobile and the web.

Who are you working with to make this track happen?
Over the past year we’ve been chatting with a lot of different people in the world of Appmaking, and we’re excited to be working with them on MozFest. Specifically, we’ve been working with a lot of Mozilla Reps, as well as companies like Snapp from Chile, AppShed from the UK, and more.

How can someone who isn’t able to attend MozFest learn more or get involved in this topic?
Stay tuned for #mozfest tweets, reams of app ideas in picture and pen, and galleries of fresh-made template apps on webmaker.org.

Thanks, Bobby!

Stay tuned for more interviews with MozFest Space Wranglers.

Q&A with Youth Muse

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Every Maker Party we get the opportunity to connect and learn about cool new organizations that are doing inspiring work around the world. Youth Muse is an organization that is activating young people by getting them involved with campaigns for social change.  This year they are working with Smithsonian Museum Day to run a Maker Party event that will encourage teens to explore their inner-artist. We had a chance to catch-up with Debra Kerr from Youth Muse to learn more about the organization and how they are participating with Maker Party this year.

YouthMuse

What is your organization and what do you do?

YouthMuse helps cultural organizations more deeply engage teens by involving them at the program design and development stage (not just at implementation and delivery) and by facilitating teen-led, museum-based change campaigns. Intuit promotes understanding of art made by self-taught artists and helps teens and other audiences discover their inner creativity.

What is the event(s) you will be hosting or running during Maker Party?

Our next event is a teen-led Maker Party on Sept. 27, 1-4 p.m. at Intuit, 756 N. Milwaukee Avenue, in conjunction with the Smithsonian’s Museum Day Live! All are welcome to visit the museum, but teens are especially encouraged to participate in the making of cool fashion accessories with upcycled materials. In addition, teens will have the opportunity to earn the Urban OWNer badge from OWN and YouthMuse and try out Intuit’s Raw Draw app.

Why did you choose to get involved with Maker Party?

Teen-led making is the heart of our Intuiteen program: helping teens find their inner artist—even if they have never created art before.

Tell us what you’re most excited for at the event?

Teens teaching teens. We love to see the teens try something new and find they can create something cool and fun. Having teen mentors makes the teens really comfortable to give it a try.

Why do you think is it important for youth and adults learn to make things with technology?

The technology piece comes into play when we digitize images of the objects, and the Intuiteens curate those images in their online gallery. That gallery is a place where teens can talk about creativity as well as current issues of acceptance, violence and environment.  What is the feedback you usually get from people who attend or teach at your events?  The parents want to know how their teens can do more with us, the teens want to make more, the teen mentors want to try new activities next time, and the adult leaders are just trying to figure out how to increase our bandwidth.

Why is it important for people and organizations to get involved in Maker Party?

When we started doing making a year ago, we saw how accessible it is for teens to get started. Sometimes they are hesitant to approach an adult with a computer, but they never seem hesitant to approach a pile of paint, old T-shirts, bottle caps and glue. Once they get their feet wet with making, then they are ready to take on more sophisticated technology.

How can people get in touch with your organization?

Deb Kerr: deb@youthmuse.me
Joel Javier: jjavier@art.org

Québec, Venezuela, Philippines: A Last Week Maker Party Roundup

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Maker Party By The Numbers:
Total events during Maker Party: 2,500+
Individuals attending Maker Party events:  125,000+
Number of cities hosting Maker Party events: 450+

Thank you for joining us on this mission to help teach the web!  We are currently rounding-up our final numbers, and we can’t wait to share what a success the past few months has been with all of you. Until then, we leave you with this final Maker Party weekly recap.

ThankYouPartners

Remember to share badges (or collect one yourself!) with those who helped teach during Maker Party!

Here’s what happened last week:

Maker Festival Manila – September 13-14th, Philippines
This two-day event was the first time the maker community in the Philippines has gathering together to showcase the work they are doing and help teach others. Together, web inventors, thinkers, enthusiast and users of all ages gathers at a local mall to showcase everything from 3D printing, to robotics, to privacy applications. Read more about the event on the site.

Maker Party Wellington – September 13th, New Zealand
Over 140 makers, tinkerers, and coders young and old descended upon the Miramar Community Centre for three hours of innovation and learning. Participants were able to see live demos of 3D sculpting and modeling with The Wellington Makerspace, create amazing LED lanterns with Fabriko and much more. Learn more in the event report-out.

#NetNeutrality Venezuala – September 13th, Venezuela
This Maker Party hosted by Laboreando was aimed at helping current and future generations gain the skills and confidence they need to learn about remixing content on the web. The event was aimed at web enthusiasts aged 16-25, and focused on how they can make the web a part of our culture. Read more about the event on the site.

Discover/Make/Teach: Mozilla Webmaker Party at Concordia University – September 15th, Québec
This workshop was attended by elementary and high school teachers, undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, researchers, media-makers, community groups, and those interested in making media. At the workshop, participants learned more about the pedagogical aspects of the Webmaker tools and the and possibilities of technology, and took part in fun, interactive and media-based workshops. Find out more information here.

Girls-only Appmaker Coderdojo – September 13th, The Netherlands
The Amsterdam Coder Dojo hosted a girls-only event, which was also facilitated by only females, to teach the basics of developing apps using Appmaker. In just a few hours attendees were taught how to develop their first app and share it with friends. Find out more on the event page.

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Resources

In the News

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MozFest 2014: Spotlight on Hive Learning Networks

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This is the first post in a series featuring interviews with the 2014 Mozilla Festival “Space Wranglers,” the curators of the many exciting programmatic tracks slated for this year’s Mozilla Festival. 

For our first interview, we chatted with Lindsey Frost Cleary, one of the Space Wranglers for the Hive Learning Networks track. This track is for people working on building local city learning networks (Hives) to determine how they can better globally connect to share learning experiences for youth interested in digital media.

What excites you most about your track? 
Lindsey: I’m really most excited about our global Hive meetups happening on Friday afternoon and Sunday at the Festival.  We’re inviting those involved with Hive communities all over the globe to join with Mozilla staff and the Hive-curious to work together over the course of the weekend to find solutions to common challenges to enacting and scaling connected learning.  It’s awesome to me that we’re bringing together our global Hive community to create and problem-solve together, not just mix and mingle (though there will be plenty of that too!).

Who are you working with to make this track happen?
Lindsey: We’re working closely with Hive communities in all stages of development, from longstanding networks like those in New York and Pittsburgh to our newest communities in Kansas City, the Bay Area, and (my home!) Chattanooga. Members from these communities are great thinkers and problem solvers. I encourage you to stop by, say hello and get your hands dirty at Saturday’s Maker Party Pop-Up.

How can someone who isn’t able to attend MozFest learn more or get involved in this topic?
Lindsey: The new Hive Learning Networks website is a great place to connect with your local Hive community (or learn how you might start your own!). We’re also planning to use Discourse both at and after MozFest to share the awesome conversations happening at the Festival with our broader networks and communities.  We hope everyone will join in this conversation!

Thanks, Lindsey! Stay tuned for more interviews with the incredible MozFest Space Wranglers.

 

Train the Trainer: Paraguay

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One of the most exciting things about Maker Party is guiding people learn, and then have them immediately use that learning to guide someone else. Last week, 13 Webmaker mentors did exactly that: after 2 days of fun but intense training they went to a local school and ran 3 back-to-back Maker Parties with over 120 high school students, aged 14-17.

Webmaker Mentor training, Mozilla Paraguay

Ciudad del Este sits on the “triple border” of Paraguay, Argentina and Brazil. Although the official language of the country is Spanish, many  here are fluent in Portuguese and the indigenous language of Guaraní — and actually, the Mozilla Guaraní community will launch “Aguaratata” — Firefox in Guaraní — next year. Being able to offer our tools and training in different languages is no easy feat on our journey to supporting more web makers, but it is a step our team is taking.

Catching a network signal — no-fi style!

This training was held in Spanish. We started at 8am on Saturday morning with sweetened coffee in one hand and post-its in the other, and shared the qualities of mentors we’ve had. The next two days were filled with spectrograms, no-fi activities for when the power cuts out, and loads of paper prototypes. The mentors critiqued activities and added their own flair — like using Guaraní commands when “programming your robot” to reinforce local culture — and designed traffic apps that took the weather into consideration so you can avoid flooded streets in this Amazonian town. We finished up the trainings with bowling in the evenings, competing for one of the coveted Maker Party t-shirts.

Monday morning we went to Centro Educativo Municipal where the mentors moved the tables in the library/IT room into groups and eagerly awaited the first group of 90 high school students. To have more space for the starting introductory circle, half of the group went outside; but to keep the spectrogram especially chaotic and fun, we brought everyone inside! Shortly thereafter, X-Ray Goggles were installed and the hacking began: Paraguay’s Ultima Hora news website quickly changed from serious reporting to a hub of dog gifs and news about the school.

 

After each session the mentors gathered to debrief and revise their plans. They quickly learned that if they were thirsty or had a sore throat after the end of a session, it was because they were talking too much. Student-centered learning became the goal of the day, and they boasted about how little they needed to drink water, despite the incredible heat! At each closing circle, students expressed what they’d learned — some learned for the first time that the Internet is not just for Facebook, while others expressed an interest learning more about what lies beneath the pages. No doubt the Paraguay mentors have many more events up their sleeves, and we look forward to hearing about them!

Resources:

Q&A with Trek Afrique

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Trek Afrique is an awesome organization in Africa that is empowering local communities  and individuals to achieve their goals through training and and exposure to technology and literacy. This year for Maker Party, Trek Afrique gathered a group of youth together and used  Webmaker tools like X-Ray Goggles and Popcorn maker to explore topics like privacy, and ethnoarchitecture. We had the chance to speak with Richard Nworah to find out more about the event and the organization.

TrekAfrique

What is Trek Afrique and what do you do?

TREK Afrique is a not-for-profit, non-governmental, community-oriented organization focused mainly on promoting rural knowledge, livelihoods & innovations. TREK Afrique means THINKING RURAL ECONOMY & KNOWLEDGE Afrique. We set up learning and motivation centers in consenting host communities, where we provide training and hands-on exposure centered on literacy, leadership, information and communication technology, innovations, entrepreneurship and entertainment. We also assist communities to harness local knowledge, capacity, content and innovations to address their perceived development priorities. Our support is designed to ensure that communities are active drivers of their desired change.

What is the events hosted or ran during Maker Party?

The Mozilla Maker Party with TREK Afrique was an insightful event for all makers. We learnt Ethnoachitecture, Drones & Civilian Intelligence, and Privacy Online. Our various maker teams were really thrilled to learn Popcorn and X-ray Goggles. We also had a session where makers were exposed to various online platforms, such as P2PU and Edx for educative purposes.

Why did you choose to get involved with Maker Party?

At TREK Afrique we believe in 21st Century education. We believe that a digital literacy skill has become essential, and that the web helps democratize access to information. TREK Afrique works with communities, and our partnership with Mozilla to host the Maker Party engenders teaching of web literacy across these communities. Maker Party time is a fun time, be it two or fifty persons I think the uttermost thrill to makers is learning something new, something that allows them to be expressive and contributors of the web and not just consumers. They soon get to find out that they can utilize the web for their good, and that their voices can be heard all over the globe from just their laptop. This is the spirit I think, binds all makers all over the world.

Tell us what you were most excited for at the event?

Team Spirit! Makers displayed high team spirit. Whether they were making a video on popcorn, or remixing a website using X-ray Google. It was all about the excitement with which the different teams competed amongst themselves.

Why is it important for youth and adults to make things with technology?

Technology affords youths an inexpensive way and avenue via which they can participate in global affairs. It democratizes access to information, and can disrupt stale ideas and practices easily.  In this ever changing world, we all need to participate in shaping our world to suit us, we all need to work together to create that world which we can exist and live in. Technology just simply ensures that everyone can participate or be heard.

What was the feedback you got from people who attended or taught at your event?

Makers and Mentors all kept asking; “when next can we have something like this?” others thought it was a very much needed event, one that is necessary for capacity building, peer learning and networking.

Why is it important for people and organizations to get involved in Maker Party?

In this age, one can not underestimate the power of the web and internet in our daily lives. If information is the most vital resource of this age, then we all need to see teaching the web as a clarion call. We all need to join this movement, and a campaign to teach the web. For inclusion and to stop marginalization, web literacy skills might just be the most effective answer. Organizations sure need to tap into this revolution to spread the reach of their impact.

How can people get in touch with your organization?

We operate from our collaboration facility which is located in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory of Nigeria.

Collaboration Space
651-HUB, 651 ROAD,
6TH AVENUE – GALADIMA, GWARINPA ESTATE
ABUJA, FCT 900108
NIGERIA

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/trekafrique
Twitter: @trekafrique
Email: info@trekafrique.org
Website: www.trekafrique.org