A Peoria Park District Facility

Maker Space

The mission of the Peoria PlayHouse Children’s Museum is to help children become explorers and creators of the world. In the museum’s Real Tools space young visitors create anything and everything using hammers, drills, saws, glue guns, and more.

The PlayHouse also offers related programs, focused on helping children become confident and creative young makers.

Real Tools

This circular room, just behind the museum’s main entrance, is filled with work benches, stools, and bin after bin of materials: wood and wood scraps, different types of plastic, cork, cardboard, tape, fabric, hardware. Each work station is stocked with hammers, screwdrivers, and pliers, but children can also ask for saws, drills, glue guns, box cutters, wood burning tools, and more. In this space children have created everything from a life-sized flamingo to musical instruments to doll furniture.

An effective makerspace teaches children not only how to make, but how to invent. It teaches them to solve problems, and also compels them to find the problems that they want to solve. It challenges them not only to learn to use tools, but to identify the best tools for the task they want to complete. Each child is working on something different, which is what allows makerspaces to foster innovation and creativity.

Real Tools is made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

 

Additional Maker Programs

Summer Maker Program

The Peoria PlayHouse Summer Maker Program begins on Memorial Day: Monday, May 27 and ends on Friday, August 16. To participate, pick up a Maker Map at our front desk (or download the 2019 Maker Map here), filled with 25 awesome making challenges. For every FIVE stamps you collect, you’ll receive a small prize of your choice AND a raffle ticket for the Grand Prize: a basket of tools and supplies to make more amazing projects at home!

For questions about the Summer Maker Program, please contact our Family and Public Programs Educator, Adrienne Huffman, at (309) 323-6894.

 

Maker Workshops

Kids and families learn to use tools, experiment with different types of making, and think creatively in PlayHouse Maker Workshops. This program is designed for kids 3-12 years old. All children under 8 must be accompanied by an adult. Registration is required and closes the Wednesday prior to the workshop. Maker Workshops are offered on select Saturdays from 2-4pm.

Oct 5 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Maker Workshop: Cookie Monsters
2:00 pm
Let’s get messy with sweet ingredients and fun kitchen supplies and make some no-bake cookies! You’ll get to take home snacks you created yourself, and the recipes so you can do it all over again.[...]
Nov 2 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Maker Workshop: Speed Boat Race
2:00 pm
Making a boat is one thing, but can you make it move?  Families will construct a battery operated boat, as well as one that is self-powered, and see how well they travel on water! In[...]
Dec 7 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Maker Workshop: Artsy Ornaments
2:00 pm
Make some festive ornaments to put on your tree, decorate your home, or give as presents to your friends and family to celebrate the winter holidays! In PlayHouse Maker Workshops, kids and families learn to[...]

We made this!

Maker Resources

River City Labs is our local maker space for adults and older children. They have family memberships, as well as individual memberships for adults. Check out their website.

Teacher Tuesdays, run by the University of Illinois Extension, is a consortium of maker-related organizations and committed educators. More information can be found here.

 

 

The Peoria PlayHouse Children's Museum

The Peoria PlayHouse Children's Museum