TAME Students are unveiling their very own handmade Little Free Library today at the UTPB STEM Academy in TAME’s West Texas Chapter. This is no ordinary DIY project, though. Made from recycled materials, their library was modeled after the Star Wars character R2D2 and towers over its young inventors at an impressive height of six feet. For you Star Wars fans out there, that’s barely a foot shorter than the average Wookie.
“Students were directly involved in every step of the build,” says TAME Club Sponsor and teacher Jeff Vann, known to his students as “Mr. Vann, Science Man.” For Vann, the circle is now complete. He learned about STEM from a TAME Club in his youth. Now he is the teacher.
“I like to show off what my kids are up to,” he says. “The domed top is recycled from a restaurant playground and most of the wood for the construction is salvage or scrap lumber… The structure has book shelves in the front and back.”
The photos of students eagerly designing and assembling their project show that the TAME Alumni has taught them well. All of the students pictured here were participants in the 30th Annual TAME State Math and Science Competition on May 2nd at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics in Fort Worth, Texas.
“On this project they’ve done a lot of engineering,” Vann told reporters with the Local Big 2 News. “The kids have gotten to use drills and saws, and they’ve learned the name of different tools. They’ve learned how to use a building square; do all these different calculations, and you can see the result.”
How did they pull off such an ambitious DIY project? Says Vann of his students’ can-do attitudes, “The force was with us.”
The intergalactic-inspired Little Free Library was unveiled to the public in Odessa on Monday May 4th and eventually will be mounted permanently in the front of the school. Watch an interview with Vann and see the proud students celebrating their creation with this story: Sixth Graders Create R2-D2 Library Drop-Off Box from Your Basin news.
Learn more about Little Free Libraries and how to engineer one for your own hometown.
Photos of TAME Students participating in the project:
See more photos of the unveiling and the final product on the UTPB STEM Academy Facebook Page here.