Take Your Kids Back to 1985 With This STEAM Boombox

What might seem retro to your kids will also teach them about science, technology, engineering, art, and math — and the end result is a functioning radio!
By Monique Melendez
Jun 13, 2019



klutz radio boombox steam activity for kids

Jun 13, 2019

Remember all of those feelings tied to your AM/FM dial? There was the magic of catching a song you loved just before it began, the thrill of calling in the radio station with a request, and the frustration of hitting a dead zone while on the road.

A boombox might look like an ancient relic to your kids, but one engaging way to introduce them to the nostalgic technology of yesteryear is to have them build it! With the Klutz: Radio Boombox kit, kids ages 8 and up can actually engineer a functioning portable radio boombox in under an hour, and they’ll be blown away by how it captures radio wavelengths to play their favorite songs.

The kit, which was recently named an ASTRA Best Toys for Kids 2019 Finalist, will also teach your tween important STEAM principles, will can help provide a solid foundation for school success throughout the year (music to any parents’ ears). Read on for five fast facts to know about this innovative craft kit.

1. It’s brain-boosting, yet completely accessible for tweens to tackle.

Aside from a battery component that requires a screwdriver, every other part of the boombox can be assembled by your tween without tools. With clear instructions and illustrations, your tween can take pride in accomplishing this with a little help, and she’ll have a working boombox to show for it.

2. It introduces them to STEAM in a kid-friendly way.

“With this kit, kids are using real electronic components to build a working FM radio,” says Brittany Leddy, the marketing and publicity manager for Klutz. “Plus, all of the pieces are clear, so that they can really see what each does as they put it together,” she adds. With a transparent FM receiver module and battery box, your tween can gain a better understanding of how all of the cool electronics work.  

On top of the know-how that comes with assembling the Klutz Radio Boombox, your tween will learn the basics behind radio technology with the accompanying booklet. It teaches readers how radios receive and transmit signals, and how electromagnetic waves and sound waves work together to make music happen, all in easy-to-understand language. This activity will motivate your kid to get excited about STEAM subjects (science, technology, engineering, art, and math)!

3. It provides other entertaining activities, too, so the focus always stays on the fun.

“The book goes into detail about the science of sound, but it’s sandwiched between content like a ‘What’s your DJ Personality?’ quiz to keep the fun front and center,” says Leddy. In addition to the educational material on how radios and sound waves work, the booklet features a DJ name generator, radio facts and trivia, and radio bingo that gets the whole family involved.

4. It’s truly a multifaceted challenge.

Between the boombox construction and the information-packed booklet, which both enhance STEAM knowledge in a number of ways, this kit provides a diverse learning experience for your tween. At the end, you can even spin it into a mini art project by handing your kid a pack of colored markers to fill in the boombox’s outlined designs.

5. It’ll even win over those who aren’t STEAM-inclined.

This craft is a great way to win over your tween who claims they don't "like" science. Between the music-driven theme and the boombox’s eye-catching, colorful design, any kid will be drawn to this skill-building activity.

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To shop the entire line of Klutz kits, visit the Scholastic Store Online.
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