Do you have a child who likes to tinker? Or a child who could use a creative outlet? An inventor’s box is a great way to encourage your child to get creative. All you need is a container and lots of random objects to get started. Here are some tips for building and using the inventor’s box.
You’ll want a large enough container to hold various items. A clear plastic tub is a great option. Your child can see what’s inside for inspiration. Plus the tub has a lid to keep all of the items inside when not in use. The size you choose depends on the amount of size of items you include. You can always upgrade if your original tub is too small.
The next consideration is what to put inside. The answer is anything that is safe for your child to use. Look around the house for old items that you no longer need. Ideas include buttons, remotes, lids, silverware, fabric, old electronics and empty food containers.
You’ll also want to include tools and items to hold the pieces together. A tape measure is a good starting point. You might also include a screwdriver, tape and glue. For older kids, wire is an option for sticking pieces together.
Using the Box
There really is no right or wrong way to use the inventor’s box. Keep it handy so your child can get creative when she wants. Try to avoid giving her ideas or instructions so she comes up with her own ideas. If she needs a little inspiration, make up some fun cards that give invention ideas, such as build a vehicle that can travel anywhere or invent a machine that does your homework.
Provide supervision when your child uses the inventor’s box, especially if any of the items could be potentially dangerous. Always supervise the use of tools or wire.
Don’t forget to display all of those great inventions. Find a shelf or another place so your child can show off the things she builds with her inventor’s box. You can keep them together or take the items apart once you take it off display so they can be used again.
Add new items to the inventor’s box periodically to keep it interesting. Before you toss something out, consider if it would work well in the inventor’s box.