This “game changer” is the Cricut Maker. I am starting with the bundle from Amazon. A Cricut machine is a type of cutter machine that can cut accurately and quickly. It can cut everything from delicate paper to fabric. The range of projects are endless with the Design Space app.
The Cricut Maker bundle comes with the Cricut machine, small rotary blade, tool set, additional blade, and pen add-ons. After assembling your tools you will download the Design Space app on your phone, tablet, or PC. I chose to download on my phone.
The app will show you a range of projects that are an additional fee, while some are free. The projects also depend on the material being used. I decided to make a vinyl sticker as my beginner project. I am still getting the hang of the Design Space app. The app is downloaded through the Itunes App Store. The app then connects to the Cricut Maker machine by Bluetooth. I am making sticker for a tray in my classroom that students frequently ask me where it is located.
The vinyl sticker I designed says, “reading logs.” This sticker could be transferred onto my tray or on the wall above it to direct students to the correct place in the classroom. Using your phone you can change the font and size of your design.
After designing what I would like cut, I am walked through a series of steps. This is an amazing app feature. It will tell you step by step what buttons to push on the machine in order to begin the cutting process. During this phase you will also determine what type of paper you would like to use and if you want a mirror image or not.
During this next stage the machine will begin cutting the image that you have designed on the Design Space app.
The finished project is the design from the app but larger dimensions. The dimensions are decided during the design phase. I can then use tools to peel off my letters and place them in my classroom on a tray or wall.
The Cricut Maker machine could be used with an adult at the middle school age level. High school students could be more independent as the tedious design aspect can be advanced. There are many ways to use the Cricut Maker machine in the library. I have linked a Pinterest board to help get started with inspiration.
The Cricut Maker is a great addition to any library or educational space. I want to list the pros and cons of the Cricut maker.
- Abundant amount of resources for help and inspiration
- Easy and simple set up process
- Large amount of free project designs
- Individuals with the Design Space app can easily make projects
- Middle school age students and up could easily use the machine with guidance or prior experience
- It is a great resource for a school library
- You need basic phone or IPad experience with using and downloading an App.
- Using the machine does take practice
- The machine would take a great deal of experience using before adding it to a library
- Easy to get stuck making the same projects
- Add-ons from the Design Space app and supplies can be expensive