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Academics' Choice Award™ Winner


Ages: 9 - 12
Price: $33.00 USD/mo. Subscription | Also available individually
Type: Toy, Arts & Crafts
By Tinkerer


Tinkerer offers STEAM activities for curious minds. In our Explore box Automaton, you'll construct your own automaton. You'll learn about the history of the automaton, how they are being used in the present and their potential for the future. We provide all the materials and instructions for you to build two different automatons to flex your engineering skills.

Review Highlights:

The Automaton is a perfect gift for that young engineer. It'll introduce him/her to problem solving, logic and critical thinking. I like this approach as I look at my son's work from school and although the teachers teach physics or mechanics, it's usually done the same way - out of a book. The best way to learn these skills and to think and problem solve like a builder or engineer is to BE a builder or engineer.

We enjoyed building the Automaton. The directions we easy to follow and the materials were solid. It took about 30 minutes to complete. I think this was all about the process and sense of completion. Overall, a nice and simple project for dad and son. It reminded me of building model planes and cars as a kid.

I appreciated the magazine that accompanied the task. It was a thoughtful follow-up activity that covered a quick history on the mechanics of automation up to modern day computers. The project helped my son realize how far we've come in terms of engineering in very little time, and it inspired him to think of other ways that automation can be used to improve our lives. (Side note: he couldn't believe computers didn't exist when I was a kid!)

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