Top Pick

Apps and Websites for Makers and Creators

The maker movement has gained steam in recent years, fueled by Make magazine and its Maker Faires. Hands-on creation, however, has a long history in education, from the arts and crafts movement to technical education and shop class to the hacker culture that spawned Apple, Microsoft, and more. Now we're seeing hands-on activities such as robotics, electronics, carpentry, and even software development become a bigger part of schools -- some are even building "makerspaces." There's no doubt that making something from scratch is a core component of learning, requiring confidence, imagination, and ingenuity while building conceptual understanding. Maker and DIY-focused apps and websites can be a huge help, providing students with scaffolding and schematics for their next project or as tools to use for design and creation. 

MoMA Art Lab Publisher: MoMA, The Museum of Modern Art
Interactive projects, cool prompts, and famous works inspire creation
Grades 1-8
Type App
Price Free
Platforms iPad
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3
littleBits Invent Publisher: littleBits Electronics Inc.
Top-notch tool empowers kids to invent, build, and control wirelessly
Grades 2-8
Type App
Price Free, Paid
Platforms Android, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
Wizard School Publisher: Duck Duck Moose
Curated videos and creative challenges ignite active learning
Grades 2-8
Type App
Price Free
Platforms iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 5
3D Slash Visit Website: http://www.3dslash.net
Minecraft-like 3-D modeling (and printing) made super easy for all ages
Grades 2-12
Type Website
Price Free, Paid
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
Curiosity Machine Visit Website: https://www.curiositymachine.org
Kids build, share, receive pro feedback with awesome engineering site
Grades 2-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Design Squad Nation Visit Website: http://pbskids.org/designsquad
Classmates can compete to solve fun engineering problems
Grades 3-8
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
KidsThinkDesign Visit Website: http://www.kidsthinkdesign.org/index.html
Projects inspire creativity; a place for kids' sharing would boost fun
Grades 4-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 3
Made with Code Visit Website: https://www.madewithcode.com/
Inspirational videos and fun projects entice girls to start coding
Grades 4-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Science Buddies Visit Website: http://www.sciencebuddies.org
A magic wand for those seeking science project support and success
Grades 4-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
123D Sculpt+ Publisher: Autodesk
Easy-to-use 3-D sculpting app works well on tablet, mobile
Grades 6-12
Type App
Price Free
Platforms Android, iPad
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
Autodesk Design Academy Visit Website: http://academy.autodesk.com
Outstanding project-based tutorials for popular engineering software
Grades 6-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
Instructables Visit Website: http://www.instructables.com
Endless collection of DIY projects; good for sharing and inspiration
Grades 6-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
SketchUp Visit Website: http://www.sketchup.com/
Make learning meaningful through 3-D design
Grades 6-12
Type Website
Price Free, Paid
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Tinkercad Visit Website: http://www.tinkercad.com
Amazingly simple yet powerful and flexible online CAD tool
Grades 6-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
Make: Online Visit Website: http://makezine.com/
Fuel creative makers with project ideas, reviews, and community
Grades 8-12
Type Website
Price Free
Common Sense Rating 3
Teacher Rating 4
Grafio 3 - Diagrams & ideas Publisher: Ten Touch Ltd.
Flexible app transforms sketches into pro-level designs and diagrams
Grades 9-12
Type App
Price $7.99
Platforms iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated