Although it might seem like a great sign of independence to work alone, sometimes it is even better to know when and how to ask for support. At first, something might seem hard or impossible to do. It might be frustrating and very time consuming to tackle something on your own. But be sure that with the help of others you might find new ideas and solutions!
Thor participated at the FUTURE MONSTER LAB in Berlin in February 2019. In the workshop the participants talked about the future, did research on problematic ways of dealing with waste, collected ideas for creative solutions and developed a future monster. The future monster acts as containers. The monsters can do everything but they don’t have to do anything. They can be loud, wild, quiet, nice, careful and rebellious.
During the first day, Thor and his new friend Tom teamed up to take an old stereo apart. They carefully took out parts and analysed them in order to understand how they functioned and what they did. Through opening the “black box” and taking it apart in an exploratory way, boys were able to comprehend complex systems and understand that it is just a combination of well-known parts (such as switches, LED’s, buttons). When they were planning their monster Tom had to leave a bit earlier. So Thor planned the monster alone, taking into consideration all the features the two of them had discussed beforehand.
During the second day, one of Tom’s friends joined the group. Together they built a monster that could clean the streets. “The robot-monster should clean the streets by using water. With a broom it can swipe away any dirt. With a hand it can pick up stones and with its eye the robot makes photos.” — Thor wrote all robot’s functions in the sketch.
During the last day of the workshop, Thor’s team members couldn’t participate. At first he was disappointed that he was all by himself and he felt left alone. He was also a bit disappointed by what the group had built so far. With the support of the mentors, Thor made a priority list of what was missing in the monster. With this clear list he had a plan of what to do and which steps he had to take. First, he wanted to integrate a light with a switch. He found a small LED panel from an old torch. From the stereo that he had taken apart he took a switch. In order to get the switch he had to disorder it. Once he had the light attached to the monster all that was missing was a motor.
This story is a great example that there is no shame in asking for help. It is not a sign of weakness but a proof that one wants to learn important things and improve his/her work. Something that might look difficult and impossible to master can be very often easily handled with a little support from others!
By Ilona Stuetz, medialepfade.org — Verein für Medienbildung e.V.
Please share and spread this story! It is published under an open license. If you copy and paste everything, including the license, we are fine with sharing and re-publishing, also translating it!
p.s. Do you know a child from 6 to 16 years who has developed a social innovation using maker facilities? Maybe you are working on a project with kids or you know a committed person in a makerspace? Contact us, if you want to share your own story! →https://www.facebook.com/DOIT.Europe.Net/
“Entrepreneurial skills for young social innovators in an open digital world DOIT Europe” project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement №770063