Building a Makerspace for Kids’ Learning with Cara Lesser

Mike is joined by Cara Lesser. CEO and Founder of the KID Museum in Bethesda, Maryland. Cara starts by describing how she transitioned from working on healthcare policy to growing interested in education as her children entered school. Inspired by the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, she sought to create an institution dedicated to what she felt was lacking in her children’s education: creative, hands-on problem-solving.

The KID museum features flexible workspaces, many digital items for kids to explore, as well as more traditional technologies. (Some of the educational technologies Cara mentions: 3D printers, CNC routers, micro:bits, Arduinos.) Cara partners closely with educators and administrators to provide compelling and effective pedagogy.  

The pandemic accelerated the move into the virtual space, and even into VR. While the focus is on K-8, KID Museum partners with Amazon Future Engineer to allow kids to explore career pathways. KID Museum also encourages education across traditional siloed subjects. This can be called “maker education,” or “invention education”. Cara cites research from the George Lucas Foundation on the efficacy of project-based learning.


Mike and Cara finish up by discussing how KID Museum might be a model for other initiatives. Join them both for this compelling look into the creative mind of maker learning.

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