Curiosity Hacked is closing its doors as of Jan 1, 2017. Stay tuned for more info about the founders and staff for more great things.
The mission of Curiosity Hacked, a non-profit organization serving kids interested in the Maker Movement, is to evolve the way that children and families learn.
Founder and Executive Director, Samantha Cook, noticed that as the maker movement gained popularity, most of the programs were directional, guiding kids toward finishing a specific project via tutorial, or through a kit. Curiosity Hacked prefers to focus on the journey, teaching kids a wide breadth of skills, so that kids can use those skills however they like.
After school, weekend, and evening programming bring in children of all ages. The East Bay homeschooling community has embraced Curiosity Hacked as an independent learning lab, collaborating with the team there to develop curriculum and experiences tailored to the needs and interests of those students.
Weekly Programs at Curiosity Hacked
Sundays are available as a drop-in activity for kids and their caregivers (no drop-offs), the community is invited to take advantage of the space. There will be a featured project to inspire visitors, but tools and materials are available for whatever kids want to work on. Or bring your own project and make use of the workspace. Typically $10/visit; can be extra if an expensive material is going to be in use.
Afternoon classes, lead by mentors, are hosted at two different levels: Sparks are kids 4-7, who focus on channeling their large motor skills and imaginations into making. Guild is for kids 8+, whose fine motor skills can handle smaller, sharper, and hotter tools.
Usually managed by a maker-enthusiast parent, members of the Curiosity Hacked community are encouraged to schedule and self-govern evening sessions.
Daytime CHILL Program
Together with their homeschooling network, Curiosity Hacked has been delivering specialized classes like game design, wood weaponry workshop (looking at stone age vs industrial age vs space age), and other educational experiences inspired by the students' interest. Academic disciplines are explored through the lens of making.
Cook is proud of the holistic and expansive approach she's empowering kids to embrace. With the Maker space as the foundation of their broader education, the team will study art, film, math, design, history, and literature through projects that the learners choose for themselves. Students go on field trips, including harvesting from the forest, meet with guest speakers, and ultimately produce a large exhibition to showcase their learning and work. Past themes have included Steampunk, Utopia, Fantasy and Magic. The students will be producing a Haunted House in October to share some of their work with the public.
Curiosity Hacked also offers summer camps, holiday vacation camps, birthday parties, and stay tuned for Kids Night Out announcements.
Visit their website to learn more. Curiosity Hacked is located at Telegraph and 61st Street in North Oakland.