Making beats, melodies, lyrics — it’s all making. Although many makerspaces emphasize creations that are physical, it’s important to remember that making music is making too.

Music connects with people of every age and culture. It can be a unifying force in any makerspace, bringing people together to celebrate creativity and community.

When young people engage in making music, they have opportunities for deep learning. Musicians are necessarily creative, collaborative, and iterative in their work. Composing and creating music is a great maker activity.

And making music generates all sorts of opportunities for learning and making new things too:

  • Make an album — then make artwork and a website to promote it

  • Make a musical performance — then make choreography and a synchronized light show to take it to the next level

  • Make a music video — plan, film, and edit a video that tells the story of a song

Need more inspiration for how to incorporate making and music in your classroom? Read on to learn about the ExCITe Center and their Summer Music Technology program, which uses music to explore STEM.

Spotlight on the ExCITe Center

The ExCITe Center of Drexel University works at the intersection of research, learning, and creative practice to connect technology and communities. The Center is known for its unique transdisciplinary projects and programs, such as Drumhenge, the Magnetic Resonator Piano, and Skyscraper Games. Through their Learning Innovation initiative and annual STEAM Education Workshop, the Center convenes national thought leaders and local education innovators to develop and deploy novel learning approaches in the Philadelphia region.

The Summer Music Technology (SMT) program at Drexel is an innovative educational experience for high school students that uses music to motivate greater interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). This unique one week long non-residential camp is offered at no cost to accepted participants and is their clearest articulation of STEAM learning, a deep integration of STEM with the Arts & Design.

Modules from this program, including their alignment with the Next Generation Science Standards, can be found on their website including lesson plans which cover topics including: