STEAM Factory

STEAM Factory Steam Factory is a pop-up makerspace in Oakland for inventors of all ages. We offer classes, tools and mentoring so you can build your dreams.

We believe that S.T.E.A.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Math) is not a series of disparate disciplines, but rather is the language we use to shape the world around us. We believe that child-led, hands-on projects are one of the best ways to learn the language of STEAM. We believe in the inspiring mentorship of creative professionals and enthusiastic teachers. Our mission is to help kids develop both the confidence and competence to change the world. THE WORLD IS MALLEABLE. YOU CAN SHAPE IT.

We are very excited to announce our next class! CREATIVE ROBOTICS: Run by Tellart http://www.tellart.com/3 Saturday afte...
03/07/2016

We are very excited to announce our next class! CREATIVE ROBOTICS: Run by Tellart http://www.tellart.com/
3 Saturday afternoons from April 9th - April 23rd at the Jack London Improvement District. Please see photos for more detail - and email [email protected] to reserve a place! First come first served :)

HUGE Thanks to Ari and Miles from Viscera Studio Oakland http://viscerastudio.com/ for teaching our 3D printing class. W...
03/07/2016
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HUGE Thanks to Ari and Miles from Viscera Studio Oakland http://viscerastudio.com/ for teaching our 3D printing class. We had a great time figuring out how to model a Penguin in sketchup! We are printing out the students' final designs now, including a pair of snazzy spectacles, a triangulated bracelet, a big button and a giant tooth shaped box to store teeth!! Stay tuned for photos of the products!

Sign up now for our next class! 3D Print parts of your outfit with Viscera Studio. Monday evenings from 5.30-7.30 at Bro...
12/13/2015

Sign up now for our next class! 3D Print parts of your outfit with Viscera Studio. Monday evenings from 5.30-7.30 at Broadway at 4th, Oakland. Starts January 11th, for kids age 8-12. Runs for 4 weeks. Only $65. Email [email protected] to sign up. First come first served, limited spaces.

STEAM Factory
10/22/2015

STEAM Factory

10/22/2015
STEAM Factory Hovercraft Class no.1

We are nearly finished with the Hovercraft project - and here is a video of what we have learned so far!
Thanks to all our wonderful participants! We are also going to make a video when we launch the hovercraft - so stay tuned!

It’s been a busy few weeks at STEAM Factory.   We finished up the table and storage skill builder projects.   Here is ...
08/17/2015

It’s been a busy few weeks at STEAM Factory. We finished up the table and storage skill builder projects. Here is the table team standing on top of it - that was one of the design requirements.

After two weeks of work, we are almost finished with the deck for the hovercraft. The deck team started by figuring out how to make a 5 by 10 foot platform from 4 x 8 sheets of plywood and styrofoam without overlapping seams. Once they had this figured out, they used two-part epoxy glue to bond the Styrofoam to ⅛ inch plywood. This makes a surprisingly rigid platform.
Once the platform was dry, we added more Styrofoam underneath for rigidity and to support the skirt attachment points. The attachment points are just regular wood, but to make them really strong and watertight, we covered them with fiberglass. This meant we had to learn how to work with fiberglass and epoxy. After a short demonstration, we got to work.

We learned that if epoxy gets on your clothes, you have to throw the clothes away. We also learned that if a five-year-old kneels down in the epoxy, the pants stand up by themselves after the epoxy dries. And we learned that by working together, we can actually cover most of the 4 x 8 surface in the 20 minutes before the epoxy gets too thick to use. During most of it, every child was working and adults were just keeping the supply of epoxy flowing.

When we finished, we bagged the entire deck and attached a vacuum to it so that the pressure of the atmosphere would smooth out any wrinkles in the epoxy. This was fun to watch. We left the vacuum running all night and when we came back the next day it looked really good.

Next week, we will mount the exterior skirt attachment points and then we’re finished with the underside of the deck. Then we can start working on the propeller duct, engine mount and airbox-more on this next week.

The Jack London Improvement District invited us to have a table at their event for National Night Out.  The food was ter...
08/11/2015

The Jack London Improvement District invited us to have a table at their event for National Night Out. The food was terrific and we had great discussions about classes, partnerships etc. Looking forward to seeing where it goes.

STEAM Factory's cover photo
07/08/2015

STEAM Factory's cover photo

This is what we are building in the first class. Wish us luck!
07/08/2015

This is what we are building in the first class. Wish us luck!

Well, it’s official. The very first class for STEAM Factory is underway.  A group of five parent-child teams is buildi...
07/08/2015

Well, it’s official. The very first class for STEAM Factory is underway. A group of five parent-child teams is building a 10hp hovercraft that will carry 2 passengers at 30 miles an hour over land and water. It can drive down the beach and out onto the water without stopping.

In our first class, we started a “failure positive” culture. Whenever anyone fails in a task, he raises his arms, yells “I failed!!” and describes what he learned from the failure. Adults and children get to do this and there were quite a few yells in our first class. Our goal is to explicitly demonstrate to every member of our community that failing is really a “First Attempt In Learning”.

Parents and kids have to get a safety briefing and demonstrate proper usage before using any tool independently. The review covers standard operation, what can go wrong, how it can hurt the user and bystanders and where the “blood bubble” is (the area around the tool that can cause injury). Once briefed, a participant can use a tool with supervision and, ultimately, independently.

Our first class focused on building a 2’ x 4’ storage box for all of our tools in our shared space, building a 4 x 8’ table/workbench for the hovercraft and figuring out how to create a 5’ x 10’ deck for the craft using 4’ x 8’ foam and plywood without overlapping seams.

STEAM Factory
07/07/2015

STEAM Factory

Address

333 Broadway
Oakland, CA
94607

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