Designed and developed by Children's Museum of Pittsburgh as a permanent exhibit space, MAKESHOP® has become a model for how to design spaces that support learning through making. We uses tools, materials and processes to help children and adults build skills of inquiry, resource-sharing, tinkering and more. Our design approach for MAKESHOP® is to create highly responsive and flexible spaces that can easily adapt to programmatic needs of the user. All materials, finishes and furnishings help tell the story of what takes place in MAKESHOP®, creating a visually dynamic and intellectually stimulating environment.

Since opening in 2012, we have collaborated with museums, schools and libraries to design their own maker spaces. We offer a wide array of options within these services, including space planning, interaction exhibits and custom furnishings designed to facilitate creative learning through hands-on making experiences. We are invested in the success of maker spaces, and are eager to share what we have learned through careful prototyping and rigorous testing by our visitors.

We are a national leader and model in the research-based design of making to support learning in both formal and informal learning environments, and are currently engaged in a number of federally funded research initiatives to further field-wide knowledge of making as a learning process. Through this work, we offer numerous professional development opportunities to compliment and support the maker space design projects.

Anne Fullenkamp