These books are great ways to immerse yourself in the Maker Movement and be inspired. Understanding the foundation of this way of teaching and learning can help Maker Camp Community Partners feel more confident about and open to the experience. Plus they’ll help you to identify who you are as a Maker and Maker Educator. We have a saying at Make: We Are All Makers. These books will make that case.
Many of these books are available in our Maker Shed in both print and digital formats. Be sure to check your local library as well!
Free to Make by Dale Dougherty
Dale Dougherty, creator of MAKE: magazine and the Maker Faire, provides a guided tour of the international phenomenon known as the Maker Movement, a social revolution that is changing what gets made, how it’s made, where it’s made, and who makes it.
Free to Make: How the Maker Movement is Changing Our Schools, Our Jobs, and Our Minds explores how making revives abandoned and neglected urban areas, reinvigorates community spaces like libraries and museums, and even impacts our personal and social development—fostering a mindset that is engaged, playful, and resourceful. Free to Make asks us to imagine a world where making is an everyday occurrence in our schools, workplaces, and local communities, grounding us in the physical world and empowering us to solve the challenges we face.
Invent to Learn by Gary Stager and Sylvia Libow Martinez
There’s a technological and creative revolution underway. Amazing new tools, materials and skills turn us all into makers. Using technology to make, repair or customize the things we need brings engineering, design and computer science to the masses. Fortunately for educators, this maker movement overlaps with the natural inclinations of children and the power of learning by doing. The active learner is at the center of the learning process, amplifying the best traditions of progressive education. Invent to Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom book helps educators bring the exciting opportunities of the maker movement to every classroom.
Making Makers by AnnMarie Thomas
Making Makers: Kids, Tools, and the Future of Innovation is a book for parents and educators—both formal and informal, who are curious about the intersections of learning and making. Through stories, research, and data, it builds the case for why it is crucial to encourage today’s youth to be makers—to see the world as something they are actively helping to create. For those who are new to the Maker Movement, some history and introduction is given as well as practical advice for getting kids started in making. For those who are already familiar with the Maker Movement, this book provides biographical information about many of the “big names” and unsung heroes of the Maker Movement while also highlighting many of the attributes that make this a movement that so many people are passionate about.
Start Making! by Danielle Martin and Alisha Panjwani
Start Making! A Guide to Engaging Young People in Maker Activities is a program developed by the Clubhouse Network to engage young people all over the world in Maker-inspired activities. With this guide, you will discover how to plan and coordinate Start Making! projects in your home, at your school or library, or in a community center, after-school club, or makerspace. You’ll learn strategies for engaging young people in creative thinking, developing individual and team projects, and sharing and reflecting on their creations. Each chapter includes a list of supplies you’ll need, step-by-step instructions for completing the projects, and prompts for stimulating discussion, curiosity, and confidence. These fun do-it-yourself (and do-it-together) projects teach fundamental STEAM concepts — science, technology, engineering, art, and math — while introducing young people to the basics of circuitry, design, coding, crafting, and construction.
Zero to Maker by David Lang
Zero to Maker: A Beginner’s Guide to the Skills, Tools, and Ideas of the Maker Movement follows author David Lang’s headfirst dive into the maker world and shows how he grew from an unskilled beginner to be a successful entrepreneur. You’ll discover how to navigate this new community of makers, and find the best resources for learning the tools and skills you need to be a dynamic maker in your own right.
Ready to take the plunge into the next Industrial Revolution?
This guide provides a clear and inspiring roadmap:
Take an eye-opening journey from unskilled observer to engaged maker.
Learn how to join this community, get access to tools and experts, and pick up new skills
Use a template for building a maker-based entrepreneurial lifestyle and prepare yourself for the careers of the future
Lifelong Kindergarten by Mitchel Resnick
In kindergartens these days, children spend more time with math worksheets and phonics flashcards than building blocks and finger paint. Kindergarten is becoming more like the rest of school. In Lifelong Kindergarten: Cultivating Creativity through Projects, Passion, Peers, and Play, learning expert Mitchel Resnick argues for exactly the opposite: the rest of school (even the rest of life) should be more like kindergarten. To thrive in today’s fast-changing world, people of all ages must learn to think and act creatively—and the best way to do that is by focusing more on imagining, creating, playing, sharing, and reflecting, just as children do in traditional kindergartens.
Every Tool's A Hammer by Adam Savage
Adam Savage is a maker. From Chewbacca’s bandolier to a thousand-shot Nerf gun, he has built thousands of spectacular projects as a special effects artist and the co-host of MythBusters. Adam is also an educator, passionate about instilling the principles of making in the next generation of inventors and inspiring them to turn their curiosity into creation.
In Every Tool’s A Hammer: Life is What You Make It, Adam weaves together vivid personal stories, original sketches and photographs from some of his most memorable projects, and interviews with many of his iconic and visionary friends in the arts and sciences – including Pixar director Andrew Stanton, Nick Offerman, Oscar-winner Guillermo Del Toro and artist Tom Sachs – to demonstrate the many lessons he has picked up from a lifetime of making.
Mindset by Carol S. Dweck
After decades of research, world-renowned Stanford University psychologist Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., discovered a simple but groundbreaking idea: the power of mindset. In Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, she shows how success in school, work, sports, the arts, and almost every area of human endeavor can be dramatically influenced by how we think about our talents and abilities. People with a fixed mindset—those who believe that abilities are fixed—are less likely to flourish than those with a growth mindset—those who believe that abilities can be developed. Mindset reveals how great parents, teachers, managers, and athletes can put this idea to use to foster outstanding accomplishment.
Grit by Angela Duckworth
In Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, pioneering psychologist Angela Duckworth shows anyone striving to succeed—be it parents, students, educators, athletes, or business people—that the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent but a special blend of passion and persistence she calls “grit.”
Drawing on her own powerful story as the daughter of a scientist who frequently noted her lack of “genius,” Duckworth, now a celebrated researcher and professor, describes her early eye-opening stints in teaching, business consulting, and neuroscience, which led to the hypothesis that what really drives success is not “genius” but a unique combination of passion and long-term perseverance.
Drive by Daniel H. Pink
Most people believe that the best way to motivate is with rewards like money—the carrot-and-stick approach. That’s a mistake, says Daniel H. Pink. In Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, he asserts that the secret to high performance and satisfaction — at work, at school, and at home — is the deeply human need to direct our own lives, to learn and create new things, and to do better by ourselves and our world.
Drawing on four decades of scientific research on human motivation, Pink exposes the mismatch between what science knows and what business does—and how that affects every aspect of life. He examines the three elements of true motivation—autonomy, mastery, and purpose-and offers smart and surprising techniques for putting these into action in a unique book that will change how we think and transform how we live.