LIVINGSTON, NJ — Special guests that included Morris Museum’s Astronomical Society, the Livingston Lancers Robotics Club, the Livingston Robotics Club (LRC) and others brought exciting items for attendees to learn about and experiment with at the Livingston Public Library’s fourth annual Makers Day event on Saturday.

New Jersey Makers Day is a statewide celebration that brings a variety of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) activities to libraries, schools and other public places to provide a fun, hands-on experience for students to learn as they manipulate items.

Among the popular activities, most of which were intended for students in third grade and above, involved steering small remote-control robots. Visitors also played with circuit boards at a nearby station. Many students had never seen or touched a circuit board before.

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Another activity had participants fashioning catapults from popsicle sticks, which were used to propel colorful little objects through the air. Children laughed as they sent the projectile pieces flying.

The squishy circuit table offered children an opportunity to use special Play Dough that conducts electricity to build circuits with wires. The students thought it was “awesome” that electricity could actually pass through the colorful Play Dough.

One station featured a button badge machine maker, where the children learned how enamel buttons are made and created buttons that read “New Jersey’s Makers Day, Livingston Public Library.”

This year, Livingston’s NJ Makers Day also offered an adult project for the first time through Creativity Caravan. The company provided a Cigar Box Diorama Workshop in which small plastic animals and objects, fabric, corks, magazines, clip art and other up-cycled items (plus glue, popsicle sticks and similar tools of the trade) were used to create personal miniature worlds.

The grown-ups had fun designing their own low-tech creative project through Creativity Caravan, which lauds diorama making as “artful and meditative.”

Adult Services Librarian Jessica Bielen described NJ Makers Day as “a statewide celebration of maker culture.”

“It allows for the exploration of new skills, facilitates community engagement, and provides learning opportunities for all ages,” she said.  

The free event, supported statewide by PSEG and NJ State Library, is also held in partnership with Girls Who Code, Girl Scouts of Central and Southern New Jersey and NJ STEM Month 2019.

The local celebration was sponsored by the Friends of Livingston Library.

Click HERE to learn more about NJ Makers Day.