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Engineering for Kids - DIY for Kids

robotEngineering for Kids

Do-it-Yourself Projects, Hands-on Electricity, Physics, Architecture, and Technology

Beyond the obvious math and science learning, engineering brings an understanding of how the world works - how buildings stand up, how machines move, and how people make and use technology. Through hands-on projects, kids gain the confidence and know-how to tackle all kinds of "do-it-yourself" tasks.

Kids start developing their engineering skills the first time they stack two blocks. Young children love to develop their design skills with building toys, or even by taping recycled containers together. By age 9 or 10, most kids can handle more complicated and skilled engineering - simple wiring, carpentry, and sculpture.

It doesn't take much money to provide kids with everything they need: scrap lumber salvaged from a lumber yard, an inexpensive hammer and some nails add up to hours of engineering fun for just a few dollars.

Here are links for learning engineering techniques big and small.

Engineering for Kids Articles on BigLearning.org

Book: Amazing DaVinci Inventions

Newspaper Forts

Toys to Make: Pinwheels

Toys to Make: Whirligigs and Tops

Make a Geyser

Tinker Ball

Boxes from greeting cards

Making puzzles

Knot tying

Program a robot

Book Review: Inventing Stuff

Bird houses

Book Review: A Kids' Guide to Building Forts

Book Review: Constructions for Children

Book Review: Battery Science

Site Review: Building Big

Paper Airplanes

Paper Sculpture

Kite Making

Site Review : Balloon Animals

Toy Review: Ultimate Rocket Kit


More Engineering for Kids Resources

Concepts Projects Online Simulations Tips and Techniques


 

Concepts

These pages will help kids learn about science and engineering concepts:

Building Big (engineering skyscrapers, tunnels, bridges, etc.): (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/buildingbig/bridge/index.html)

How Stuff Works site: (http://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/) (Note: Some content on this site may not be OK for kids - for example, how weapons work.)

Franklin Institute's guide to engineering simple machines: (http://www.fi.edu/qa97/spotlight3/spotlight3.html)

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Projects

These pages have project ideas and instructions.

Zoom Science Projects (Engineering Category: http://pbskids.org/zoom/activities/sci/

Future Scientists and Engineers of America: http://www.fsea.org/

Hey Kids! (simple projects): http://www.new-sng.com/experiments.cfm

Design Challenges from the Tech Museum: http://www.thetech.org/learning/challenge/design/

Toys kids can build: http://www.build-it-yourself.com.

Article on how to have a "Take-it-Apart" party: http://www.education-world.com/a_curr/curr342.shtml.

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On-line Simulations

Roller Coaster: http://www.funderstanding.com/k12/coaster/

Sodaplay (design and race online machines): http://sodaplay.com/

 

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Tips and Techniques

Model bridge design tips: http://abcdpittsburgh.org/kids/kids.htm.

Glue types and when to use each type: http://members.rogers.com/andrews7624/GG/glues.html.

Balsa wood: http://www.zimsweb.com/balsa.

Woodworking, tools, metalwork: http://mysite.freeserve.com/designandtech/searchtesistant.html

Woodworking tips: http://www.woodzone.com/tips.htm

Recognizing electrical components: http://www.reachoutmichigan.org/funexperiments/agesubject/lessons/handouts/elcomponents.html

Styrofoam craft techniques: http://www.dow.com/craft/about/tips.htm

Animated knot-tying: http://www.mistral.co.uk/42brghtn/knots/42ktmenu.html

 

 

 

 

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