Welcome to the very first Foundation Features blog post! Every month, we will showcase a Foundation-funded program at the King County Library System (KCLS). This month, we spoke with David Wasserman (Online Library Services Manager) about ideaX.
What is ideaX?
ideaX focuses on creativity and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math). These hands-on learning experiences are for patrons of all ages. Librarians host programs throughout the county using ideaX 'kits.' The kits contain supplies, technology, and other material to support project-based learning. There are also ideaX Makerspaces, which are lively community spaces. You can take free classes at the Makerspaces. You can also use 3D printers, sewing machines, and other equipment. The first Makerspace opened in Bellevue Library in April 2018. The second Makerspace will open in Federal Way in Spring 2020.
What has been the most exciting part of ideaX so far?
Watching evolution! ideaX started with middle school students learning STEM ideas with Minecraft. Today you'll find ideaX programs in all KCLS libraries and programs for all ages. The ideaX program is reaching more people at the Bellevue Makerspace. Soon, we'll be reaching even more people at the Federal Way Library Makerspace. Many people using the Makerspace wouldn't otherwise have access to this equipment.
What is your hope for ideaX in the future?
We need to keep learning and improving as we go! Our programs must continue to evolve in response to what our unique communities need.
How can patrons get involved with ideaX?
The best place to start is by attending a program that looks interesting. Or, by visiting a Makerspace during their drop-in hours. You can also get involved as a teacher or volunteer by talking to the teams at Bellevue or Federal Way Library. Visit kcls.org/ideax for more details.
How does funding from the Foundation help your program?
ideaX would not exist without Foundation support! The Foundation has funded:
- Two incredible Makerspaces.
- More than 50 highly-used kits
- Staff time.
Learn more about ideaX at kcls.org/ideax. Attend the April 4 grand opening of the Federal Way ideaX Makerspace. Full details coming soon!
Your donations to the KCLS Foundation makes programs like ideaX possible.
The Foundation funded 60% of KCLS programs in 2019.
Learn more about the Foundation at kclsfoundation.org.