From time to time we invite guests to post about items of interest, and we’re pleased to have Dale Dougherty, publisher of MAKE Magazine, join us today to talk about Maker Camp. Maker Camp is a free, online camp that encourages 13- to 18-year-olds to get creative with up to 30 different types of fun projects themed around creativity and “the art of making.” -Ed.

In the words of young maker Joey Hudy: “Don’t be bored. Make something.”

That’s the idea behind Maker Camp, a new online “summer camp” on Google+. Over the course of six weeks, 13- to 18-year-olds (as well as their parents and teachers) will have the opportunity to collaborate with popular maker personalities—including Mark Frauenfelder of Boing Boing, Stephen and Fritz of EepyBird (the Coke and Mentos guys), Jimmy DiResta (co-host of Dirty Money on the Discovery Channel) and Limor Fried (founder of Adafruit)—and other creative teens on fun projects themed around “the art of making.” Our goal is to encourage everyone this summer to make something and share it with their friends and family.

Making is a wonderful way to experiment and explore, to try to do new things, and mostly to let your imagination get the best of you. Making is fun (and it’s also a great way to learn, even if it is summer!). Making can be done indoors—even in a small space, like a kitchen table—but it’s also great to go outdoors to make things you can play with in the backyard or park. Making could mean traditional arts and crafts projects, or science projects, but it could also use innovative technologies and processes that enable you to create something entirely new.

Every Monday through Thursday morning, beginning Monday, July 16, a Maker Camp counselor will post how-to instructions for a new project on g.co/makercamp and Makezine.com/go/makercamp. Some of these projects will overlap with ones in MAKE’s 3D “School’s Out” special issue, our first-ever summer issue devoted entirely to kids. These projects are great for families to do together or for teens to do on their own. Many of the projects involve materials and tools that you can find around the house. Junior counselors will host a Hangout On Air in the afternoon so campers can post questions and comments and share photos and videos of their projects.



The first project at Maker Camp is our popular compressed air rocket that we first introduced in Make: Vol 15 to huge response. We featured it again in the “School’s Out” summer issue and are delighted that rocket guru Rick Schertle is our guest counselor for this project and will be with us in New York to launch Maker Camp at the New York Hall of Science.

It wouldn’t be summer camp unless you were able to meet a lot of great, new friends who share your love of making. You’ll find that other campers will inspire you to come up with new ideas for projects.

Maker Camp is free, and open to everyone with a Google+ profile (you must be over 13 to have your own Google+ profile). To participate, simply follow MAKE on Google+.

Whether you build rockets or race cars, make T-shirts or experimental music, or discover nature or new things in the community where you live, I hope that you’ll have a blast at Maker Camp.