Archive | STEM

Build a Simple Circuit from a Pizza Box (No Soldering)

When I find simple, creative ways to teach electronics to my kids I get excited. I found this simple project that will cost under $10 and teach your kids about circuit design without having to burn the tips of your fingers on a soldering gun.

Watch the video below and then head over to Instructables to get detailed instructions on building this fun project.

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WHS 62 – Champlain Mini Maker Faire Report – The Wired Homeschool

Despite the rain, cold and wind, the Champlain Mini Maker Faire sparked the interests or young people to create, invent, and innovate.

After a two and one-half hour drive to Shelburne, VT I arrived at the Maker Faire ready to be inspired. I thought for sure that the rain would keep away the crowds but it was packed! People were milling around checking out the booths. In many places people were shoulder-to-shoulder checking out demonstrations from makers all over Vermont.

Some of the more popular attractions that afternoon were the rocket launches and pumpkin/watermelon chuckin’. Watching controlled explosions and fruit fly 500′ into Lake Champlain caused quite a commotion.

Not to be outdone, many makers dealt with crowds around their tables all day. The lock-picking table, robot teams, and more spent as much time down crowd management as demonstrating their skills.

Listen in as I share about the highlights on the day.

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Music by Kevin Macleod.

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Champlain Mini Maker Faire in Vermont This Weekend – The Wired Homeschool

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The Champlain Mini Maker Faire is a great opportunity for homeschoolers in the Northeast who can’t get to Maker Faire in New York City to hang out and learn about engineering, science, and technology. Via GeekDad –

On Saturday, September 29, the first-ever Champlain Mini Maker Faire will take place at Shelburne Farms in Shelburne, Vermont. Put together by aerospace engineer and Vermont Education Coordinator Doug Webster, President the National Association for Workforce Improvement, the Faire will be a showcase for the DIY community in the Green Mountain state.

The new Faire is off to a big start. Dean Kamen, inventor of the Segway and founder of the FIRST robotics competitions will be arriving by helicopter to give the keynote speech. The theme of the day is flying, and there will be balloons, blinkies, quadrocopters, and much more. More than 40 Makers, hacking collectives and companies are expected to be exhibiting, including Vermont Makers, theVermont Technology Alliance, and Burlington-based hackerspace Laboratory B.

I’m going to try and be there this weekend. Tickets in advance for adults are $12, $14 at the door. Kids 12-17 get in for $8 in advance, $9 at the door. Kids under 12 are free. For more information and to purchase tickets visit the Champlain Mini Maker Faire website.

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The Learning Power of LEGO [Infographic] – The Wired Homeschool

LEGO and EducationWhen I was a kid I loved my LEGOs. Living in Germany during my childhood meant that I had access to sets that kids here in the United States couldn’t get. Little did I know that while I was building cities I was learning. Now, LEGOs are used in a number of ways to educate kids of all ages. Check out the infographic below to find out about the building blocks of education. Continue Reading →

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How to Hack a Webcam for Telescopes and Microscopes – The Wired Homeschool

I posted this video to YouTube in 2006. It’s the most “viral” video I’ve ever produced—receiving over 300,000 views.

It’s a simple instructional video showing you how to modify an old webcam to use with a telescope. You could even adapt this for use with a microscope if it has interchangeable eyepieces. Simple hacks like this are a fun way to introduce your kids to scientific topics.

Grab that telescope that’s been collecting dust in your basement or closet and go out at night a make some moon videos! Post them on YouTube or send them to me and I’ll be happy to include them here. If you post your video on YouTube, put a link to it in the comments below.

Once you’ve hacked your webcam, check out this article on capturing images and how to use your new toy.

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