"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing."
- George Bernard Shaw
At Saturday's Kids Hack the City in Austin, TX we were joined by over 200 kids and parents at Travis Heights Elementary to make games, messes, inventions, robots, and belly laughs.
We'll have more photos and videos to share soon...but for now here is a list of resources for all of the attendees (or anyone else!) who'd like to dig deeper into our workshops and bring them into their homes:
The squishy circuits workshop enabled kids to use conductive dough, LEDs and batteries to assemble their own squishy inventions. Check out squishy circuits workshops you can do at home here: http://courseweb.stthomas.edu/apthomas/SquishyCircuits/buildingCircuits.htm
This experiment allowed kids to use household chemicals to extract and see DNA from strawberries. It is also is super squishy and super easy to do from home. Check out the step-by-step from Science Buddies: http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project_ideas/BioChem_p015.shtml
Biomimetic Wing Design
Biomimicry TX got kids excited about design inspired by nature. After studying- the structure of wings, kids used natural and recycled materials to design their own giant wings and lift off (or spin around)!
Learn how to design your own wings at the Curiosity Machine: http://www.curiositymachine.org/index.php?r=activity/view&id=319
Video Game Design & Makey Makey
Kids designed and hacked video games using Scratch, a sort of virtual lego blocks for programming designed to enable kids to create their own interactive experiences. It is free along with thousands of examples on MIT's Scratch website: http://scratch.mit.edu/
For controllers and real-world interface experimentation (including an arcade joystick made from a glass bottle and cardboard box) they played with Makey Makey, an invention kit that allows you to turn anything conductive into a keyboard, joystick, or controller.
Learn more and purchase your own Makey Makey here: http://makeymakey.com/
Dj Technology with Dub Academy
Wheat Pasting is a biodegradable way to create street art collages. Our kids added their pictures of the present and future to a painted skyline of Austin.
Make your own wheat paste using this recipe: http://destructables.org/destructable/wheatpaste-recipe-putting-postersbillboard-alterations
The high tech artists from Collabnart set up a light writing photobooth. Follow these instructions to create your own light doodles: http://www.instructables.com/id/Write-or-Draw-with-Light!/
Katie Kizziar from soon-to-be-open Austin Thinkery brought four sets of LEGO Mindstorm kids and taught kids how to build and program their own robots. Go check this and more amazing workshops and experiments when the Thinkery opens to the public this December: http://thinkeryaustin.org
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Thanks again to the amazing energy, creativity, and curiosity brought by all of our kids, parents, and mentors who made Saturday an amazing day.
Please share your inventions in the comments as you take any of these workshops and run with them at home!