Are you looking for an innovative way to encourage creative thinking, innovative ideas, and gamification in the classroom? Well then there’s a kid-friendly and parent-approved site called DIY.org that you should know about.
What Is DIY.org?
The DIY online club awards badges (called ‘Skills’ on the site) to students and kids of all ages in exchange for completing tasks. DIY Makers share their work with the community and get patches for the Skills they earn. Each Skill consists of a set of Challenges that help them learn techniques to get the hang of it. Once a Maker completes a Challenge, they add photos and video to their Portfolio to show what they did.
It’s a fascinating site that’s beautifully designed and extremely fun and easy to use. I’d wholeheartedly recommend it to any teacher or parent looking to encourage Do-It-Yourself lessons without worrying about coming up with the projects yourself. Better still, the badges are adorable and the avatars to choose from are insanely fun. I’m a moose as you can see below.
The DIY site has an iOS app which works on iPhones, iPods and iPads. It’s a great way to use the device’s camera to document your DIY work and add to your portfolio. You can then share your photos and portfolio with parents, teachers, and others. Click here to download the DIY iOS app.
Great For Parents & Teachers
The signup process is amazing. Students and kids sign up on the site and are prompted to enter their parent’s email address. The parent then gets a ‘permission slip’ and has to approve it and then set up their own account on the site. Genius.
The DIY site is pretty straightforward but I found their FAQ so useful that I thought I’d share parts of it here. If you go to the page, you can see that sewn badges are coming soon. Watch out Boy and Girl Scouts!
What are Skills?
Skills are unique sets of knowledge and know-how that Makers learn to become self-reliant and creatively powerful. Each Skill consists of a set of Challenges that help them learn techniques to get the hang of it. Once a Maker completes a Challenge, they add photos and video to their Portfolio to show what they did. Completing three challenges for any skill earns you the patch.
What happens when I earn a DIY Skill?
The Skill patch is displayed on your portfolio for other Makers to see, and soon we’ll have embroidered patches to send you when you earn a Skill.
What’s the right age for kids to start using DIY?
We designed it for ages 7 and up, but parents are encouraged to sign their kids up earlier and help them along until they’re ready to use it themselves. Some reading is required.
What are the animals about?
We ask kids to use animal avatars as masks to protect their real identity and allow them to project themselves as they wish to be. Plus, its fun to imagine what your inner animal is – are you more like a fox or a turtle?
What’s the point of the DIY iOS app?
The app is the easiest way for you to capture what you make and add it to your portfolio. This way, you don’t have to transfer photos or videos from your digital camera to your computer to the DIY website. You can download it free from the Apple App Store.
Is DIY safe for kids to use?
Can teachers use DIY with their students?
DIY is a great way for students to build a portfolio of their work in your classroom. You’re welcome to help them sign up, but keep in mind that each kid’s parent will receive an email from us asking for permission for them to join. We encourage you to give parents a heads up.
Does DIY cost anything to use?
No. Your kid can create an account and use DIY for free. Many parts of the service will always be free to play. However, DIY will eventually offer paid memberships. Membership will give DIY kids access to extra features.
H/T to @teachthought for finding this site!