Tinkering: Kids Learn by Making Stuff from Maker Media is Released
How can you consistently pull off hands-on tinkering with kids? How do you deal with questions that you can't answer? How do you know if tinkering kids are learning anything or not? Is there a line between fooling around with real stuff and learning?
Tinkering: Kids Learn by Making Stuff lets you discover how, why and even what it is to tinker and tinker well.
Author Curt Gabrielson draws on more than 20 years of experience doing hands-on science to facilitate tinkering: Learning science while fooling around with real things.
Written to give adults insights and strategies for getting kids to learn through tinkering, this book shows you how to make:
- A torsion drum from plastic cups
- Magnetic toys that dance and sway even a magic wand
- Catapults and table-top ball games
- The "Moose Call" membranophone
- A tornado in a bottle, a "steadiness" circuit, and much more
From the dawn of time, whenever humanity has wanted to know more, we have achieved it most effectively by getting our hands dirty and making careful observations of real stuff. In short, we have learned primarily by tinkering.
Despite a clear need for it, tinkering is still stuck in a charming-but-unnecessary peripheral corner in society's collective mind.
"While I did learn a good bit at MIT, what I learned on the hog farm of my youth turned out to be much more applicable to life," says Gabrielson. "Building multi-level tree houses, exploring the bottom of the pond with a garden-hose breathing system, and rigging up baby pig incubators near the woodstove were just what I needed to meet the challenge of making education real and relevant for kids."
It is entirely possible for your kids or students to learn a good bit about a cell phone, laptop, doorbell, or toilet by tinkering around with it. The information they acquire may (or may not) prove useful, but the process of getting it can bring them joy and prepare them for further forays into learning with their hands.
For more information about the book, including table of contents, author bios, and cover graphic, see http://shop.oreilly.com/product/0636920028895.do