Everyone can learn how to solder

Auteur
Astrid van Roij-Lubsen

Really, soldering isn't really that hard. You only need to know some tricks!

On Sunday March 30th, 2014 there was a special FabSchool Kids edition in de Waag. Mitch Altman, an American hacker and inventor, visited The Netherlands. I got him so far that he would give one of his famous soldering workshops at the Fablab Amsterdam. Mitch Altman sells electronic kits he designs himself to amke a living, the rest of the time he can fill in with the things he likes most. His first wise lesson for the group of young participants marked his personal vision: "Try to make a living of what do you most love to do."

The boys and girls could choose to make two different things: a little lamp which they can control with their own hands or a 'TV-B-gone', a gadget with the power to switch all the TV's in the direct surrounding on and off. Two tables full of heat glowing solding machines and 12 enthusiastic beginners. Will this turn out allright? Yes, it will! Mitch takes the time to explain everything and gives various tips and tricks to the children. After his explanation, the kids get the responsibility to do everything own their own.

The method of Mitch is completely in line with the FabSchool sessions we are organizing. These sessions are based on the 'learning by doing' theory, which means that every kid get the chance to design, discover and learn in practice. Within the FabSchool sessions there's plenty of room to make mistakes. Do you wonder why Mitch is so great at soldering? It's because he already has made so many mistakes!

In the coming year we hope to continue with organizing many different activities for youngsters in the FabLab Amsterdam so we can introduce even more kids to the secrets of great soldering.

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