Wendel’s Workshop

30 09 2011

LBM loves this book – I’ve read it over and over again and it’s a book he asks for just after it’s finished. It’s a story that appeals to the inventor in children and LBM likes the robots that Wendel creates to overcome the mad tidying robot set on world domination. I’ve been thinking of some type of activity to do with this for a while and as I made some discovery bottle for BBL this week I also made one for LBM. It’s a Robot discovery bottle – a plastic bottle full of nuts, bolts, screws, washers, googly eyes, springs, wire and anything else I could find that was interesting and robot like. I don’t think he could quite believe he was being allowed to play with such interesting things but he was.

The aim was to give him the chance to invent his own robot so he was given a foil covered bit of cardboard to lay the parts on. I didn’t really have a plan though so just let him explore what was inside. Great for developing an understanding of how things fit together and work. There was a tiny speaker in there taken from one of those annoying birthday cards and it had a magnet in it. LBM spent time testing what would stick and what wouldn’t. A small spanner also intrigued him so once I’d had a new spring fitted to my finger he tried tightening it. A good way of developing fine motor skills because threading the spanner in between the coils was a bit tricky.

The best part though was his discovery that the wire could be poked through the holes in the nuts and washers. I hadn’t thought about this when I put the bottle together but I’m glad his curiosity helped him with this discovery. He shows very little interest in the threading beads we have so how cool is this for encouraging little boys to develop fine motor skills? It’s so much more motivating than a wooden bead. I think I’ll add a few more washers for threading because they were also great for resting googly eyes on.  He also spent ages talking to himself and inventing little stories about robots. All in all an engaging activity for him.

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