My kids are typical boys. They’re curious. They like to tinker with stuff to figure out how things work. In other words, they love STEAM. So we’re always doing and looking for awesome activities and projects to get into.
Recently, I connected with a STEAM project-based curriculum provider, KitHub and we were asked to give them some “tried and tested” feedback on their Future Engineer Kit.
KitHub provides a variety of project kits designed for kids Kindergarten through 8th. grade. The kits are ready-to-go activities which can be easily integrated into your homeschool. They are open-ended and can be completed in one hour or extended to suit your needs.
We were super-duper excited when our kit came and couldn’t wait to get into it. Here’s our Instagram post the day we opened our box. 🙂
What’s in the Kit?
Our kit came in a cute red toolbox with goggles for all my boys and 3 projects. The Light-Up Superhero Mask, Paper Circuits and Motorized ArtBot.
Project 1 – Light-Up Superhero Mask
The boys had a really good time doing this mask and it was so easy they barely needed any instructions. They put on their safety goggles and went to work coloring the mask, then adding the LED light and coin battery.
Project 2 – Paper Circuits
This was their first introduction to circuits so prior to doing the project we talked about the concepts and accessed the facilitator’s guide on the KitHub website. We also looked at some YouTube videos on series and parallel circuits.
We then did the initial project which was a simple series circuit card using copper tape, LED light and a coin battery. The whole concept of adding lights to their projects was a big hit, so we extended the activity by making a “paper city” using these templates and instructions. (In the future, we plan to make some awesome light-up greeting cards for gifts too! Yay!)
Project 3 – Motorized Artbot
This was another hit for them. It’s robot time! Time to get stuff moving! They quickly put the pieces together for this project, which included a battery holder, batteries, motor, paper cup, alligator clips, electrical tape, and googly eyes. They made sure the battery holder was attached securely to the cup, connected the motor to the batteries using the alligator clips and wallah! Our robot’s moving!
Our Instagram video.
A Few Things We Liked
- The toolbox came with everything we needed to do the projects.
- They provided all the instructions as well as a variety of projects we could do to extend the learning
- I could access lesson plans to help facilitate the lesson
- The projects were simple enough to easily introduce the electronic concepts
- The additional lesson plans allowed us to explore the concepts further
A Few Things We Didn’t Like
The Future Engineer Kit comes with the materials to do 3 different projects, however, since they are no extra parts provided in the kit, if you mess something up (which would be really hard to do) or something breaks, then it may hamper the progress of the project and leave you with frustrated kids! For example, the AA battery in the sample kit we received was slightly corroded so, I had to use a battery from our house stock. If we didn’t have a battery… well, that means a trip to the store and an interrupted lesson. One way maybe to avoid that scenario would be to check the contents of a kit prior to doing the lesson.
- Simple and parallel circuits
- Art integration
- Movement with motors
Where to buy STEAM for Home
- Future Engineer Kit (3 projects) – $50
- Motorized ArtBot Kit – $15
- Light-Up Superhero Mask – $10
- Home STEAM Program (5 projects) – $70
Future Engineer Kit Overview
- Grades K-5
- Project-based learning
- Focus on critical thinking skills
- Opportunities to extend the learning
- Starting at $10 USD
We really had a good time with this kit. I think what we liked the most was the kids could get right into making stuff.
We’ve even since made a trip to the Radio Shack to stock up on LEDs, a few extra motors and other electronic knick knacks for future experiments!
I’ve also recently adopted a paradigm shift in our approach to science. Typically, we “learn” about science by doing the theory first, then we do an experiment at the end. To be honest, sometimes the lessons themselves are so long, we don’t get to all the experiments. Doing the experiments/projects, though, is really where the learning takes place. So, now we seek out programs that allow us to get our hands dirty right off the bat. Then we learn the theory and apply it to what we’re making.
Based on our experience we feel like KitHub is a good option for homeschoolers looking to get right into making stuff while helping kiddos understand the concepts using the lesson plans and facilitator’s guide. Using the kit sparked our imagination and even got me excited about making stuff! Since our introduction to KitHub my boys have been making more motorized elements using the simple electronic components and skills they learned.
What’s your family’s approach to science and making stuff? Have you used kits like this before?
- STEM Summer Camps 2017
- Did I mention, we have a good time over on Instagram? We post a lot of good stuff that sometimes don’t make it to the blog, so check us out.
Disclosure:This blog post may contain affiliate links. This product was provided to use free in exchange for a review on my blog. The opinions expressed in this post are my own, and were not influenced by the company or free product provided.