We asked members about their experiences on DIY and we couldn’t be prouder with what they had to say. 

Check out our new About page for more insights from members and parents.

2 weeks ago 64 notes

The epitome of a sibling relationship encapsulated in this comment thread between two sisters.

3 weeks ago 113 notes

You’re Invited to the #PizzaParty on DIY!

You’re cordially invited to our #PizzaParty! Everyday for 7 days, we’ll be celebrating the awesomeness that is pizza by getting ready for the virtual party on Friday, August 7th. We’ll be making all things pizza related throughout the week - from costumes, to decorations, to videos, and of course, pizza!  

On August 7th, post the projects you’ve been working on with the tag #pizzaparty to join the party on DIY!

To RSVP, post a video of yourself saying “I’m going to the pizza party!" and include the tag #pizzaparty in the title or comments. Lookout for tomorrow’s post where we’ll be getting our costumes ready!

3 weeks ago 29 notes

Katie is currently a 10th grade high-school teacher in California. We asked her to give us her insights on using DIY in the classroom.

1. What were your thoughts and feelings about using DIY in your classroom?

Running a DIY classroom was a rad opportunity!

I think my students enjoyed doing DIY, because it allowed them to do autonomous learning on a skill of their choice.

It was exciting to hear students talking about their challenges/what others posted, saying they felt a sense of accomplishment, and even recommending DIY to their younger family and friends.

Originally I wanted to use DIY was a basic “portfolio” platform to show my school district that students can create and post work without compromising their security (and dare say, their minds). Our district was so protective that they blocked a lot of websites that assist in learning (StoryCorps, NPR?!, art and design blogs, YouTube, etc). While I do have a teacher code that opens these websites, DIY provided a framework for students to showcase their learning and new skills within a supportive community.

DIY will serve as a gateway that prepares kids to create their own YouTube channels, enter film/art/media festivals or competitions, submit portfolios for college or career scholarships, and/or have blogs that say something.

The experience motivated the kids to talk, plan, collaborate, be creative, to give feedback, and use technology for good, maker purposes.

These are all skills we value and teach in my academy, the Academy of Media Arts, and doing project-based learning integrates the new Common Core Standards. In many ways the maker mentality reminds me of the HOLSTEE Manifesto (“Do what you love and do it often” “Life is about the people you meet and the things you create with them…”) and Stefan Sagmeister’s work from his book Things I Have Learned in My Life So Far.

2. Do you think you’ll do it again?

Yes! I’m planning to do it with our sophomores again (14-16), but I want to introduce it at the beginning of the year instead of the second semester. I’m toying with the idea of having kids do a patch related to their elective pathway. We have four sequences of elective classes: Theatre, Digital Filmmaking, Animation, and Commercial Music. Then again, I think it’s important to give kids choices. What’s your suggestion? This year we’ll have a third Mac lab for the content teachers to use, which will encourage all teachers to integrate more 21st century skills and help kids understand the value of their digital footprint.

3. Did you happen to write a reflection yourself?

I unfortunately didn’t write a reflection. I meant to…but did I show the kids my teacher DIY portfolio and talked about my learning process with them. We discussed posting quality work, why things might be Staff Picks or Community Favorites, how to meet the requirements of the challenges to earn the patch, how to be a positive role model for the younger kids on the DIY, and the problem-solving for uploading/using the app.

4. What can we do on our end to make the process better?

The hardest thing for me was figuring out how I was going to assess their learning. It took longer than expected to create the handouts, project description, and rubric. Also, since my students are on the older side I wanted to make sure they weren’t using it like other popular social media. I think it’d be great to post handouts for teachers to modify like you do with the parent flyer, leader handbook, and permission forms. I didn’t to post in the educator and parent forums, although I did read them to see if the dialogue and questions applied to my pilot classroom.

Time is always an issue for teachers and it’s super valuable to get ideas and be able to collaborate from peers.

I felt like I was sometimes working on this in my own bubble, but I think that was a bit self-imposed. I do appreciate your questions and correspondence.

Tell us how you’re using DIY in your clubs or classrooms by sending an e-mail over to diana@diy.org - we’d love your insights.

1 month ago 43 notes

Sending off a shipment of 150 patches to a DIY Club in Orange County, CA. Check out the latest from the OC DIY Club by visiting their portfolio.

3 months ago 71 notes

5 Introductory Tools to Programming

Have you been toying with the idea of learning how to program but don’t know how to get started?  Check out these introductory tools to help you begin to think like a programmer.  Figure out how a computer works, instruct computers to performs tasks, create your first game, and more. 

ScratchOne of the easiest ways to get started with programming is to remix someone else’s already existing program. Remix a project using this free programming language called Scratch. You can build games, animations, music videos, and more.

Minecraft: Use blocks to build just about anything you can imagine in a virtual world. Discover engineering concepts, architecture, mathematics, as well as critical thinking skills and teamwork.

Develop a Game: Get started on building out the code, artwork, and music for a video game. These tools will help you build an interactive experience.

Remix a Website: Never seen the insides of a website? Use Hackasaurus to hack your favorite website to have it look and do whatever you want.

Run a Node.js Server: With Node.js, you can mimic the back and forth request/response your browser sends to servers when you visit a website. Set up your first development environment.

4 months ago 1,201 notes

The Kid Entrepreneur

Four months ago Ogel posted a handmade cardboard display for his patches and solved an Entrepreneur challenge in the process.

The response from the community was overwhelming – every one wanted a patch display, too. Sensing an opportunity,  Ogel made a plan to design and produce the displays to sell in the DIY Market.

During two months of development, Ogel iterated the design so the displays could tile infinitely, and he found a local shop that would laser cut the cardboard for him.

We’re happy to share that Ogel’s invention is now the top-selling product in the DIY Market! It’s available for $10.

Help your kid unleash their big ideals to the world by encouraging them to try the Entrepreneur skill.

4 months ago 111 notes

The DIY Team spent this past weekend at the Berkeley Art Museum hacking sounds using MaKey MaKeys and Quartz Composer. Kids used construction paper and tin foil to create their own one of a kind musical pad/keyboard and one kid even managed to create a track using his face. Make your own weird sounds and become a Hardware Hacker.

5 months ago 97 notes

Stories from DIYers

We’ve been doing some research over at the DIY HQ, asking DIYers “What has DIY done for you?” The responses have been extremely insightful and we’re thrilled to see how our community has grown over this past year. Check out these wonderful stories on how users are discovering their passions and exploring new topics through the site.

"DIY is the best thing ever created. I’ve met friends, and made awesome projects. It gives me things to during the summer and weekends, and I make things I’ve never thought of before. In a summary, DIY is awesome." - Mustache Gal

"I am able to express myself in a way that I used to be too shy to do in person, and it’s a badge of honor to do these things. " - Evil Ladybug

"I’ve always loved being creative and making things and DIY as allowed me to take it a step further by sharing my creations online. Before DIY I had know idea what a claymation even was! Now I’m making them and coming up with ideas for them all the time!" -TomKat

9 months ago 25 notes