The doors of the Factory wide open for our elementary students

Today, the pupils of our primary sector have seen their horizons widen in front of them as in the famous scene from Mommy, the film by Xavier Dolan. Why, then? They learned that the doors of Fabrique Beaubois would be wide open to them next September.

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by Jean-François Houle
Teaching assistant and ICT facilitator, Collège Beaubois

Today, the students of our primary sector have seen their horizons widen in front of them as in the famous scene by Mommy, Xavier Dolan's film. Why, then? They learned that the doors of Fabrique Beaubois would be wide open to them next September.

Our young students have realized that they will really each have their place in this unique space (you can follow the implementation of the Fabrique Beaubois in this well-rounded file). Obviously, the lab will be filled with cutting edge creative tools: laser cutter, 3D printers, computers, TNI, robotics sets, cameras, green screen and even sewing machines, but first it will be and above all filled with their ideas, their creations!

They quickly understood that the word "manufactures" comes not only from the verb fabricate, but also recalls the verbs build, build, create, understand, explore, words that speak to young people of their age. Nathan Holbert, a professor at Columbia University, demonstrates in his studies that elementary school children learn best when they do things (he slips a word into this excellent video). And ideas for make things, they have! Moreover, we met some of our students of 3e and 6e year to survey the field and you will see for yourself here that it is not the ideas that are lacking when we give them a platform. In the maelstrom of ideas that we are waiting for, there will of course be a lot of unrealistic and outlandish ideas, but the error will never be devalued. If ever they were wrong, students would have to adapt, start over and get up again: this is often the best way to succeed and grow.

Already, some teachers in our primary sector have projects on their drawing boards that will be much more meaningful for young people thanks to the possibilities that Fabrique Beaubois will offer. We are talking about a robotics project in 2e year, a study of birds in 3e year that can go a little further with the manufacture of cabins, challenges of inventive genius that can be reborn in 5e and in 6e year, or the science fair for our older children in elementary school.

The beauty of all these ideas is that they can come to fruition even more easily through collaboration. As we are lucky, quite rare it must be said, to live in a school where we find students from kindergarten to 5e Secondary, the limits of projects can be pushed a lot further when the older ones support and develop the ideas of the younger ones. For example, characters straight out of the imagination of kindergarten students could be transformed into very concrete stuffed animals, logos created by students of 6 years old.e years could appear on jerseys produced by high school graduates. This collaboration, whether it is done internally or with external partners, will over time become a central pivot of the Fabrique Beaubois, an invaluable asset.

We are living an exciting adventure. Day after day, we are building a new “home” thanks to passionate educators who believe in the creative potential of our young people, whether they are 5 or 17 years old.


This article is part of the dossier " The establishment of a digital manufacturing workshop (makerspace) ", whose here is the list of articles in antecchronological order.


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