BATHURST (GNB) – Students at Superior Middle School in Bathurst are benefiting from a new makerspace though a partnership with Brilliant Labs.

A makerspace is an area that allows people to use tools, materials and technologies in different ways. The goal in schools is to make learning more interesting, fun and relevant for young people, allowing them to solve everyday challenges and reinforce curricular outcomes.

“One of the objectives of our 10-year education plans is to improve learning in, and application of, the arts, science, trades and technology for all learners,” said Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Brian Kenny, who visited the school today. “Having spaces like this in our schools will help us achieve that.”

The Superior Middle School makerspace, which opened in January, is one of the newest and largest in the province. Students are working on several projects, including some involving robotics, stop-motion video using green screen technology, rapid prototyping with 3D printers, and coding electronics.

There are makerspaces in about 50 schools across the province. In 2016-17, the government provided $500,000 in grant funding to Brilliant Labs.

“We believe that teachers and students will greatly benefit from the problem-solving and learning made possible in these creative and inspiring spaces,” said Jeff Willson, executive director of Brilliant Labs. “We are encouraged by the province’s ongoing support of makerspaces.”

Brilliant Labs is a not-for-profit, hands-on technology and experiential learning platform that supports the integration of creativity, innovation, coding, and an entrepreneurial spirit within classrooms and educational curriculums. More information on its programs is available online.

The government’s 10-year education plans aim to improve educational outcomes and better prepare young people for the future. They set objectives in priority areas to create lifelong learners, support educational leaders and bring stability to the system.