This is an updated blog with photos. Movie clips appear in Blog 8.
The latest Young Inventor workshop just ended after two hours a day for the week of April 9th. The Young Inventors were younger than before, aged 6 to 8 years, with higher energy levels, and more rapid invention development – but with less time spent on refining their creations. The group created an unexpectedly high number of vehicles, mostly powered by solar cells, batteries, and rubber bands – with vehicles that travelled on land, water, and air. We had machines that walked like insects, crawled like snails, rolled like dragsters, swam like propellor powered whales, and flew like powered gliders. The young students also made geometrical models that could change shape or have fixed shapes.
Biggest lesson for me was that younger inventors need a snack and a run-around-break! Malone Sheeran, a Sophomore at South Summit High School, was my very able Associate Inventor during the week. Malone brought in snacks encouraged the students to find out which vehicles moved the fastest, farthest. or how well they walked, or how far they crawled. Malone’s main academic interest is astrophysics. Malone’s experience, working with children through her community rolls in the Girl Scouts and with the Rotary’s “Interact Club,” helped the kids focus and overcome the challenges they were faced with. Sad news is that Malone died in an auto accident April 24th and we’ll all miss her. The upcoming Teen Inventor Workshop, in the summer at Kimball Art Center will be dedicated to her – it will include robotics, she really liked the idea!
Spring 2012 Young Inventors:
The next “Young Inventor,” class will be towards the end of July at the Kimball Art Center – the same week as the first “Teen Inventor” class. Will add robotics to the class.