Bringing repair to the classroom

Hi everyone,

I have read previous topics from 2018/2019 on this topic, e.g. Repair events with/in schools and Getting kids into repair and I am aware of the Materials Matter resources.

But I am wondering whether anyone on here has actually run a repair event at a school, with kids? If so, what worked and what did not? What year group(s) did you target?


We blogged about our pilot enrichment programme here - lots of learning for you about brining repair into the classroom

This post in particular we talk about hosting Restart Party in a secondary school, involving pupils and parents and the wider school community.

We’d love to hear from others about their experiences too. We know Malvern Hills has some great experience with primary schools but sadly we haven’t tempted them onto our community just yet.

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Seems I had to go back to 2017! :laughing: Thanks, Janet!

Hi Frank
I have been repairing School equipment for 45 years (Reco Laboratory Services) - microscopes, and power packs, are the main problems. I have also run half day microscope serving and repair workshops at 30 Universities and Schools over the country and abroad. Of course at Universities it has been adults and at schools the science technicians. I have also taken a large number of microscopes into a school to show the kids how to use them. I am now trying to get the Oxfordshire Repair Cafes to take on the work
Cheers Derek


It’s been very hard to get into schools, during school time, especially secondary schools… We want to be in schools during the school day so as not to become an activity for the privileged few who can participate in after school activities. Primary schools might be the best place with most flexibility to start teaching repair.

Forgot to mention, we also discussed the topic at #fixfest-2019 - here’s the write up

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Thank you for the links @Janet and the microscope story @Derek_sayers. I will try to reach out to Malvern Hills - I’m eyeing the local primary and secondary schools here too.


Oakland Unified School District (California) ran a terrific internship this summer: high schoolers repaired thousands of of the MANY thousands of computers students used last year for remote learning.

Repair skills, stewardship of limited resources, participating in the well-being of the school community, planting vocational seeds and a sense of empowerment vis a vis taking care of the things we have… all for good.

Article here: Oakland High School Students Repair Over 3000 Computers

Oakland Unified School District has over 80 schools serving some 50,000 students.


This is such an amazing story, loads of praise on social media. We’d like to learn about the ingredients for success in this case. Would make an amazing case study @Culture_of_Repair

Exactly. I’m wondering what the challenges were and how they overcame them.

Yesterday I took first steps in connecting with the folks involved. Also spoke with people at Berkeley Unified School District (where I live) about perusing a similar project and more — having students who’d learned technology by repairing school computers be the people who support a 10 week Restart program. They’d provide technical support to fellow students while also broadening their understanding of the issues.

Then more: The California legislative process seems to have R2R consideration on the docket in March / April / May each year. When I went to Sacramento to lobby for R2R I saw teachers ushering their students from legislative office to office, lobbying on various matters. Great exposure to the nitty gritty of how ideas become policy!

I’ve spoken with a few educators in Oakland about structuring a year-long project combining a Restart program in the fall, followed by focusing on policy in the spring. COVID put everything besides surviving on hold. I’m hopeful the Oakland initiative described in the article oiled be a point of entry for planting the seed for a one-year technical + socio-economic + political project. Interdisciplinary because repair is multifaceted (as is life).

Big vision.

We’ll see.

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Hello Frank,

On my Resources for Educators page I’ve included links to two other programs that post very useful materials (“other” in addition to Restart’s excellent program.), along with other resources.

See here.

I’d appreciate it if you’d let me know about anything else you find. I’m trying to create a rich resource for teachers working to bring repair into schools.

A school district here (San Francisco Bay Area, California) conducted a repair internship this past summer. Information about that is below in this thread. The district is now developing a repair internship for the school year. I’m in conversation with them about what that might look like, how it might be informed by the larger repair movement, e.g., more comprehensive material taught than just technical skills.

I’ll post here as that takes shape.

Good luck! Let me know what you find.