Blog maker

Riviera Ridge School Maker Fair inspires scientific research and exploration | School zone

Posted May 9, 2022
| 9:46

Students, teachers, and thinkers of all ages are invited to Riviera Ridge School’s fourth annual Maker Fair, 10 a.m. to noon, Saturday, May 14 on campus, 130 Mission Ridge Road, Santa Barbara.

The show, which is free to enter, will feature 21 booths, each presenting a fun and accessible science question, and allowing visitors to participate in a short hands-on project to find the answer.

The school’s state-of-the-art creative design and engineering center will be open with the full kitchen and 3D printer available for DIY.

“The world has reached a tipping point and we need innovators who can solve complex problems: climate change, pandemics and energy crises,” said Melissa Wilson, director of university innovation. “American education must go beyond teaching the mechanisms that led to these societal and environmental problems and empower students to creatively solve them.”

At each booth, visitors are encouraged to use STEAM2 (science, technology/engineering, arts, math and movement) concepts to help solve problems. Riviera Ridge faculty and student teams will occupy each booth, which will pose a science question and activity.

They include questions that are both fun and important, such as: how far can you fly a rocket? How can you make ice cream from our garden? How to design a 3D object?

“The goal of our Maker Show is to showcase our STEAM2 programs and empower our community to become innovators themselves,” Wilson said. “At the heart of our fair is the idea that genius is inside of us all if we tap into our own creativity, innovation and inspiration.”

The fair highlights the school’s interdisciplinary elective program where students take three courses per year of their choice in the STEAM2 fields. This year, students had a choice of 27 courses in a variety of disciplines. Classes have included surfing, coding, tropical ecology, chocolate chemistry, film, Shakespeare, fishing, SB Culture blog, podcasts, and chess.

“The hope is that by their eighth grade, students have cultivated their personal passion and are ready to introduce their passion to the rest of our school community,” Wilson said. “The fair kicks off our school’s Genius Week, where students from kindergarten through eighth grade showcase their class projects and the middle school musical.”

“Our first Maker Fair was in 2016 and we didn’t have it during Covid, so we’re thrilled to welcome our entire community back to campus for a magical day of hands-on learning,” said Molly Seguel , Director of Admissions.

To learn more about Riviera Ridge, email [email protected] or call 805-569-1811 ext. 131.