Welcome to the Build-It-Yourself Laboratory

April 3, 2010

We offer an online art and engineering program for kids 8 – 18.

We’re looking for business developers, teachers, artists and engineers who share our passion for building and teaching.

Thanks for visiting.

John Galinato, Chief Engineer
Email: john@build-it-yourself.com
Phone: 617-875-1960

Self Portrait


21st Century Skills

April 3, 2010

What skills will tomorrow’s builders and problem solvers need to fix the complex problems our generation has left them?

How do we teach the skills that the next generation will need?

How do we pay for teaching the skills that the next generation will need?

Computer Games

April 3, 2010

Many parents do not want their kids to play computer games.

Computer games were only moderately interesting to me until I read the book, “Got Game” (Harvard Press) about the skill set of middle level managers who play computer games vs. those who don’t.  I wonder how many parents who want their kids to have a job someday would invest in  an Xbox after reading this book.

I have heard that one of the first questions asked in a Google interview is, “Are you a gamer?”

Reading books and playing computer games . . .

Which activity exercises critical skills such as teamwork, problem solving, risk taking, and dealing with failure?

You will say, “But reading books teaches values.”  

That may be true provided you read the right books.  (My passion was Donald Duck comic books.)

Which has more violence and sexual stereo types?
The German fairy tale, Snow White or World of Warcraft?
DH Lawrence Lady Chaterly’s Lover or Pokemon?

I wonder why it is that my generation, brought up reading books, has messed up our environment, spawned greedy frauds, and perpetuated nasty religious, sex and race wars.

In multi-player computer games, which is more important?  Your sex, race, religion or your teamwork skills. 

I wonder if computer games will help the next generation deal with complex global problems a whole lot better than our generation has.

No one is proposing that kids should not be avid readers.  Some are simply suggesting that kids who do not experience computer games may not develop the skills they will need to be useful in tomorrow’s work force. 

Project Based Learning

April 3, 2010

Blog / John Galinato

How can we inspire and guide kids to build?

Do we learn more about a particular subject by reading a book, by listening to an expert or by doing a project?

Could you learn to play tennis or speak Spanish from a book?

What skills should kids learn in school and what skills are best learned outside school?