Lots of Pots

It has been a blast to watch the kids throw pots on the pottery wheel.  The best part is the watching the progress.  The failures and flops have taught them that not everything comes easily and some things require patience and practice, and it’s ok to mess up!  They have made so much progress and are truly proud of the pots and other creations that have made it through the process.  We are still taking pictures of everything and plan to update the website as we can with the many wonderful creations.  IMG_2664 IMG_2615
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Pallet Bike Rack

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Inspired by the clutter of bikes in our garage, our (at the time) 12 year old made this durable bike rack out of a recycled pallet and some scraps.  Cut and sanded, with a simple stand that holds it upright, it has been truly appreciated and holds 6 bikes.   It’s hard to believe we allowed the bikes to be stored any other way.

Coloring Marker Bot

We finally made a simple Coloring Marker Bot with our youngest, and it was all joy!  We originally saw this idea at the NoCo Mini Maker Faire and had to try it at home.

Materials: Plastic cup, duct tape, some markers, a motor, 1 AA battery, some wires to connect the motor and battery, and a hot glue stick.

Marker BotHow to make a Coloring Marker Bot:

1. Connect wires to your motor (ours was an up cycled motor that already had wires attached).

2. Cut about 1/3 of a hot glue stick and push it firmly onto the motor shaft, so it is off center–this is what causes the vibration that moves the bot.

3. Tape your motor to the bottom of the cup (top of Marker Bot), using duct tape.

4. Arrange and tape desired markers around the outside of the cup making sure not to interfere with hot glue stick as the motor turns. Also be sure the marker tips are evenly aligned so all colors actually mark the paper as the bot moves.

5. Tape the battery to the cup anywhere it won’t interfere with the motor, but so it can be connected properly.

6. Tape one wire from the motor to one end of the battery.  If you connect both it will start running, so be sure you are ready for that.

7. Connect the second wire to the battery once you are ready to see the bot in action.  Make sure your fingers are not near the motor.  We used duct tape but made it so the connection could easily be removed to stop the bot.

8. Put your bot on some paper and watch it go!  We used an old drawer from our pantry to help contain the bot from going off the paper.

9. Experiment with taping different things to weight the bot in certain ways and observe its movement.  Can you get it to go straight or in circles?

10. Have fun!

 

 

We’re going to the NoCo Mini Maker Faire!

On October 5th we will be heading to the NoCo Mini Maker Faire.  Our ideas and projects are coming together.  We will have a small 10×10 booth with a few things to do and see.

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As part of the Cardboard Challenge going on at the faire, we will be bringing our own cardboard inspired game… Ours is a cardboard tower with different stuffed animals placed throughout.  The object of the game will be to take the giant slingshot we are building to launch a bird (hopefully not an angry bird) to knock down the tower.  We will be setting up in the next few days to test it out and see how it works!

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We will also have paper for making paper helicoptersloop planes and any other things kids can think of that will fly or fall.

More ideas will be added…we just hope there will be enough room!

Weekend Fun

lemon battery

Last night we had fun experimenting with lemon batteries.  We used 3 juicy lemons, a galvanized nail and a penny to power a blinking LED.  We measured 2.1V at the output!  We let it run over night and the LED was still faintly blinking in the morning, over 13 hours later.  It was great to see the kids’ enthusiasm and excitement when they got it working!

Still Making

It’s been a while since our last post, but we’ve been busy making, just not keeping up with the blog.

Recently we made Brush Bots from the Maker Shed.  The kids had a blast and set up a little track for the bots to race each other.  Our biggest project is the tree house we are building in our back yard, it is a big project but we are making progress.  Doll bunk beds are being designed and constructed by our girls and our oldest made an awesome bike rack out of a repurposed pallet…all on his own!  Hopefully pictures of all these fun adventures will be added soon.