This educational activity is designed to encourage a child’s engineering skills. My daughter loves to build things and I love to provide her the opportunity to use those thinking skills. While building with simple materials they are not only learning to solve problems, think creatively and critically, use logical processing, but also how to construct the image in their minds with their hands.
You don’t need a lot of materials to help a child practice engineering concepts. In fact the more simple the materials the more creatively they have to think to achieve the outcome they want. They will have to work those problem solving skills to create new ways to use what they are given.
For this activity you will only need two things… Tooth picks and mini Styrofoam balls. I used colorful toothpicks but that is not necessary.
See what they create and build themselves or you could also give them shapes to create.
Such as “Make a square.” “Make a rhombus.” “Make a 6 sided closed shape.” And so on.
The basic concept of a polygon is a 2d shape that has straight sides and is closed such as this triangle.
The kids went a little farther to create some unique 3d shapes as well… And the toddler made a spider.
I suggest having the balls in a container as they tend to roll easily and if you do have toddlers around, supervision is key.
The simple shapes are easy to make and it also helps children to be able to see the different between a closed shape and an open shape.
That spider is one of the best spiders I have ever seen… I am so proud.
The girl took things a little further to create something that impressed me greatly. All it takes to get a child creating is a few materials and confidence. The way to build a child’s confidence is to give them activities that are appropriate for them as well as a few that will challenge them.
Give them the materials, confidence building opportunities, time, and encouragement and they will build you a rocket.
Suggestions, requests, questions, or comments?
All activity images, printables, and games are free to download and/or use as you choose, with the exception of claiming as your own, modifying, or redistributing as your own. Feel free to link to this page but not to the download or image itself, if you would like to share downloads or ideas. All shares are appreciated. Permission to use 1 image of your choice is given. Thank you for respecting these guidelines.