Parents | Raising readers & learners.

Home of Parent & Child Magazine

Make a Machine

Imagination is the key to invention in this open-ended activity.
 

Learning Benefits

Hover over each Learning Benefit below for a detailed explanation.
Creativity
Imagination
Vocabulary

What you need:

  • a variety of boxes, cardboard tubes, containers, and other leftover household items 
  • markers 
  • paper 
  • tape 
  • tempera paint 
  • scissors 

What to do:

  1. Talk with your child about inventing his own machine. Think about some ideas together for what kind of machine he will make. How about one to dispense a snack or clean up his room? Brainstorming will increase his ideas and excitement about his new creation. 
  2. Invite him to draw the new machine and tell you about what it can do.
  3. Have him bring his invention to life using the boxes, containers, and art supplies you collected.
  4. When he's finished, give him time to explain and talk about his creation. What does this machine do? Does it help people with their work or make life more fun? 

Learning benefits:

  • Encourages creativity 
  • Promotes vocabulary-building discussions

Find Just-Right Books

The Reading Toolkit

Sponsor Spotlight