Where ideas turn into experiences

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By Rumela Sinha
  • Published 5.07.16

It's a rare congregation where designers, techies, tinkerers, hobbyists and artists get together to toy with their ideas, exchange notes and give shape to them. MakersLoft, eastern India's first makerspace, lets children give flight to their imagination with the help of tools and tips from professionals.

Purav Manot is passionate about robotics and has been following YouTube videos to build a bot. MakersLoft gave this student of Lakshmipat Singhania Academy a platform to develop professional skills and collaborate with fellow robotic enthusiasts. Manot now helps other kids create custom robots.

"I used to watch videos and design programmes with sensors and motors but never got a chance to showcase my models. Then MakersLoft happened. Now, I get to exchange and share interesting robotic experiences with professionals and hone my technical abilities," Purav said.

Come with an idea and leave with a product is the invitation from Meghna Bhutoria, the founder and CEO of MakersLoft. "From 3-D painting, robotics, app development to photography, herbal painting, woodwork and fashion designing, MakersLoft is a one-stop shop for thinkers and innovators, no matter what their age," she said.

The concept is widely prevalent in the US, France and Germany and has finally found a niche for itself in Calcutta. Stationed in a flat on Ballygunge Road, MakersLoft offers an enticing blend of lab-based learning, hands-on training and even offers chances of entrepreneurship.

"There are plenty of such never-seen-before experiences dished at MakersLoft. We have also introduced some unique and fun activities for tots and teens. Making 'glow-in-the-dark' objects, setting up structures and models using PVC pipes and phone film-making are some of the interesting options that can break the monotony of routine life at home or school," Bhutoria said.

For Kushagra Kanoi, a student of Calcutta International School, the Lego classes on Saturdays are something he looks forward to all week. His Lego blocks were only lifeless pieces of plastic before he joined MakersLoft. Now, he knows how to get the blocks moving. "I used to make Lego cars but couldn't do much to get them going. But with Lego technique set here, I know how to put lever and battery to use," Kushagra said.

Namrata Manot, a Lego instructor at MakersLoft, said: "The kids' imagination knows no boundaries. We give them an idea and watch them add their own creativity to it."