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Empower/Inspire/Motivate Vietnamese orphan children into the STEAM - Maker Movement, creating global citizens that solve local problems

Maker Academy - Kidspire Vietnam

Maker Academy brings an equal educational opportunity, and re-designs a learning environment for Vietnamese orphan children. Using design thinking, project-based and personalized learning, hands-on activities, integrated social emotional learning, and joining global contests/movements to develop a growth mindset, that brings out the maker in each child, creating global citizens that solve local problems.

What is Maker Academy for Vietnamese orphan children?

Tra-My Nguyen, Maker Academy Initiator & Coordinator
“We combine design thinking and project-based learning to bring out the maker in every child that can solve local problems with a global citizenship mindset. ”

Tra-My Nguyen, Maker Academy Initiator & Coordinator

We (Kidspire Vietnam - also as known as Orphan Impact) believe that each child already has special seeds inside that will flourish in different ways depending on the educational environments they are immersed in.

We would love to bridge the educational gap for disadvataged children, inspiring them in learning and helping them to prepare for their future after leaving the orphanage. We provide a free training program to develop core competencies, so that they can become global citizens who can solve local problems: empathy, creativity, critical thinking, collaboration and grit. 

During the last 2 years, more than 300+ children from 7 different orphanages throughout Vietnam directly benefited from the Maker Academy program of Kidspire Vietnam with more than 200+ Maker/STEAM activities.

The classroom can be indoors or outdoors and set up with 3-5 different stations so that children can choose which station they would love to join on the day. The stations could be related to: circuitry, experiments, engineering, coding, robotics, maker activities, global movements/contests (ex. Google Code-in: a largest online global contest encouraging young people into open source; or Technovation: a global movement to empower girls into technology - solve real-world problems through technology...). We create the best environment, so students are given the opportunity to become aware about the world outside orphanges. 

We would love to reach more than 1000+ children throughout Vietnam in the next 2 years.  

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Innovation Overview
Target Group
1 100
4 930
Tips for implementation
You will need space with internet connection, and most importantly educators and learners with an open mind, curiosity and who are willing to learn new things, to tinker, to mess things up, to fail and try, to solve local problems with a global citizenship mindset. Maker supplies will vary depending on the activity/project.
Connect with innovator
HundrED Review

This maker academy is innovative in that it empowers children from socio economically deprived backgrounds to gain critical skills through an inclusive academy.


This academy has a huge impact for Vietnamese orphans . There is typically not a lot of opportunity to be involved in maker activities and prepare for a future once they leave the orphanage . In Vietnam, typically only international schools can do these activities. Maker Academy gives children the opportunity to do these activities in a free classroom, and opens a new world for them.


In 6 different areas in Vietnam. Expanding to 3 more in the next year.


See this innovation in action

17 Global Goals
Summer STEM Camp - Ben Tre Province
Summer STEM Camp - Ben Tre Province
After having a chance to work with Tra My and Orphan Impact team in a maker project last year, I believe that, with the great team like Orphan Impact and the great vision of the leader, Tad, there are more unlucky children from many orphanages in Vietnam will have chances to be trained by Kidspire with this interesting maker program. And for sure, a lot of kids will be stronger, be more helpful and successful as many of them already achieved recently! Great job, Tra My and team!
I learn a lot from my students thinking and maker skill
Thanks for what you did for orphans!
Nguyễn Hồng
Recognize the potentials in vulnerable children and empower them to control their own destiny. I believe the best thing that could help a child is to show him/her what she/he is able to do independently. And Orphan Impact is doing that with the greatest passion.
Dang Hong
I am a lead teacher of Kidspire. I teach Maker Academy at Vung Tau orphanage-Vung Tau province. This project help students develop creativity, communication and collaboration.
Tien Tran


Achievements & Awards


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Inspired to implement this? Here's how...

Find an orphanage that would love to have a Maker Academy Program
Find an appropriate orphanage that would love to have a Maker Academy Program for their children
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Train teachers to lead classes
Teachers will be well-trained to lead classes
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Train volunteers to support classes
Volunteers will be trained to support classes
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Provide carefully planned lessons
Provide carefully planned lessons to engage students
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Provide kits/supplies to use in Maker classes
Depending on the activity, we will provide kits/supplies for students to tinker with
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Continually ask for feedback and modify the program accordingly
We use many ways to get feedback from students: reflection activities, google form, digital portfolios, interview directly...
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