WHO WE ARE
KOKO (named by children) is the education initiative of Brooklyn’s own Open Source Gallery. Open Source Gallery believes that art education is integral to our children’s development.
KOKO combines Open Source’s mission of supporting socially engaged art and environmental awareness with STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) programming. KOKO offers a variety of art-based workshops for ages 5-15 that utilize technology and recycled materials to help your child to create their own unique invention.
Our arts education programs have been hosted by esteemed organizations such as the MoMa, Children’s Museum of Manhattan, Brooklyn Museum, TedYouth and Cooper-Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum. We have been featured in numerous publications and media including The New York Times, New York Daily News and Brooklyn Independent Television.
WHERE WE TEACH
KOKO Open Source currently serves over 700 children in year-round workshops at public schools across NYC. And we are ready to come to yours! Click here to see a list of schools where we are currently teaching.
OUR WORKSHOP ENVIRONMENT
Our most important goal is to teach your child that nothing is impossible and nothing is too difficult. We create an open and encouraging environment that is focused on building your child’s confidence in their individual process. Through trial and error, your child will begin to figure out how things work, learning engineering and problem-solving skills that they will use in school and beyond!
We offer a variety of arts education classes. Our after school workshops are called BitBots!
WHAT IS BITBOTS?
BitBots workshops enable children with a range of abilities and learning styles to design and build their own creations! Utilizing the award-winning littleBits technology along with recycled materials, your child will make contraptions and creatures that can move and light up! Open Source founder Monika Wuher has been a featured littleBits “meet the maker.”
Recycled materials serve a dual purpose in all of our workshops: they help us teach about sustainability while ensuring that the kids in our workshop are not all using the same materials. We are currently the only program of this kind in the NYC area.
Click here to view a three minute video about BitBots!
BITBOTS AFTER SCHOOL OPTIONS FOR K-12
We offer a variety of BitBots options for after school based on age and interest. Class length can be adjusted to work with your individual after school program. Classes are listed below in order of grades.
BitBots Basics (K-5)
Our teachers will help guide and encourage your child as they choose recyclables such as plastic bottles, cardboard and paper to create sculptures that, when combined with littleBits, come to life and light up, twist, turn, buzz, blink, and shake! Through the process of designing and building, your child will experience the practical and cultural possibilities of new inventions!
BitBots + Space (Grades 3-5)
Your child will learn about the incredible makeup of our universe by taking a look at current NASA projects and uncovering fascinating details about the planets. As part of the workshop, each child will choose a planet they want to explore, then build their own rover to transport them there. Taking into account the unique challenges the planet poses to space voyagers, kids will design their rovers using the NASA engineered littleBits Space Kit -created with the help of Open Source founder Monika Wuher- along with recycled materials! Elements such as the planet’s temperature, surface and distance from Earth will be considered as kids construct their own interplanetary vessels!
RGB: Rube Goldberg BitBots (K-2, or 3-5)
A marble runs down a ramp and hits a light switch! A slingshot triggers a motion sensor! Our youngest inventors will explore the magic of chain reactions with inspiration from our friend Rube Goldberg who famously brought engineering and silliness together! Through trial and error, your child will figure out how to make their own simple Rube Goldberg device using recycled objects and littleBits! Our older 3-5 grade groups will take it to the next level, figuring out how to link their individual inventions together to create one big machine!
Bionic BitBots (K-2)
This workshop draws from your child’s natural instinct to explore the real world through fantasy. Kids will design and build a robotic bionic body part and animate it with littleBits! By the time the workshop is over, your child will be able to assemble their pieces and suit up for an epic battle! Inspired by Mark Stilwell’s installation and performance “The Super Defense Force vs The Tittanno Beast” at Open Source Gallery.
Synth BitBots (grades 3-6)
In SYNTH BitBots the students will conceptualize and create an instrument that they can play themselves. Using the littleBits Synth Kit in conjunction with recycled materials, students will use their innovative instruments to write songs and lyrics. Ultimately the goal is to form a band with a sound unlike any other! littleBits are simple electronic modules, each with specific functions, which can be snapped together magnetically to create large and elaborate circuits for prototyping and play.
BITBOTS AFTER SCHOOL OPTIONS FOR GRADES 6-12
BitBots and Bytes
BitBots and Bytes is a series of classes run with the use of littleBits and Arduino, an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. Students in this workshop will learn how to code and how to use this physical computing technology to create creative, technological objects.