Imagine and design solutions to challenging questions posed at the Maker Space. Make your creation from a range of materials provided and test out your design. Share your thinking with others and build on each other’s ideas.

Maker Space is included as part of your SparkLab ticket. 

9:40am – 5pm
Daily

Take a seat

16 December 2019 – 29 March 2020

Fold, cut, roll and join! How will you change cardboard to make a mini chair?
Be a designer and create a simple prototype using repurposed materials. Consider who your chair is for and shape, structure and stability.

This activity invites you to follow a design process. Below are some of the questions that will help you at each stage of the process.

Think of some solutions

  • Do you have a favourite chair? What makes it just right for you?
  • Who are you designing your chair for? What does the chair need to do? A toy can be selected for the user.
  • What are some real world examples of different types of chairs? Do any have moving parts? 
  • What are the different parts of a chair? What is the purpose of each part? 
  • What shapes and structure will make the chair strong and able to support the user? 
  • What ideas do you have for a design? 

Make a prototype

  • What materials will you use to build your chair? If using repurposed cardboard, what type of cardboard would be right for the different parts of the chair?
  • How will you fold, roll, cut, weave and change the cardboard to make a mini chair?
  • How will you join the different parts of your chair together or make moving parts? 
  • What part of the design are you finding tricky to build? 

Test it out

  • Test out your chair using a doll or toy. Does it support your toy? Do they look comfortable?
  •  Is the chair doing what you designed it to do? Does it look the way you hoped it would? 
  • What did you observe when you tested your chair? 
  • Did anything unexpected happen when you tested your chair?
  • What part of your design worked really well and suited your user (toy)?

Improve your design

  • How could you improve on your design? Are there any areas where you need to improve the strength or stability of your chair? 
  • Is there anything else you would like to add that you think your user would need or like? 
  • What ideas could you incorporate from someone else’s design?
  • If you started again, what would you do differently? What would you do the same? 

This activity supports the key learning areas of Science and Design & Technology, in the Australian Curriculum.

Previous program ideas and resources


  • Air Machines

    17 September – 15 December 2019

    Push, pull, lift and tilt! Add parts to an air powered machine. What will you make the machine do? Use two 10 ml syringes and plastic tubing to create a pneumatic system. When you push on one syringe plunger, the air pressure inside the system will cause the plunger in the other syringe to move. Add parts to your movable plungers. What will you make your air powered machine do? Add more their one pneumatic system into your machine. 

  • Land sailing rovers

    24 June 2019 - 16 September 2019

    How far will your wind-powered vehicle travel down a test track? Make a vehicle and create a customised mast and sail. Use a fan to propel your rover through some all-terrain challenges, such as different surfaces, ramps and bridges.  Consider the properties of different materials and whether you need your mast and sail to be light or heavy, strong, rigid or flexible. Think about the forces involved as your rover moves forward.

    Set up a Land sailing rovers Maker Space activity at your space.

  • Shake it up

    Maker Space Shake it Up

    4 April 2019 - 23 June 2019

    Can your structure survive the power of an earthquake? Make and test your custom-built design to see if they survive the destructive force of the quake. Consider the different properties of the materials you are using and whether it is better for your structure to be light or heavy, strong, rigid or flexible? What happens if the quake is quite strong or you add multi-levels or weights to your design?

  • Can you cross it?

    17 December 2018 – 3 April 2019

    Moving something across town, over the river, up the mountain or across the valley takes some thought. Build a structure to help move something light or heavy between two parts of the landscape. Consider materials, strong shapes and the size and weight of your object. Your landscape can be made using boxes or furniture and have parts that are of different heights and different width spans.

  • Zip to it

    17 September 2018 – 16 December 2018

    This tricky terrain is a breeze if you slide or roll down a zip line. Make a device that transports a person or object safely along a zip line. Zip lines can be made from different types of thread, cord or line, set up at different angles and have different lengths.