Have fun working with your community to gather materials for children's inventions. Here are some places and materials to explore (and remember that these businesses can also be great places for a field trip).

  • ONE HOUR PHOTO SERVICE: empty film canisters
  • RESTAURANTS: plastic dough buckets, large herb tins, large transparent plastic jars, Styrofoam fish shippers
  • PRODUCE DEALERS: grape boxes, fruit and vegetable posters, mesh onion bags, berry baskets
  • DRESSMAKERS: fabric ends, thread spools
  • FABRIC STORES: fabric bolts, outdated pattern books
  • CARPET STORES: cardboard rug cores, rug samples
  • APPLIANCE STORES: big boxes
  • SUPERMARKETS: cardboard 'dumps,' food posters, large-sized food shipping containers
  • ELECTRICAL STORE OR ELECTRICIANS: wire spools, plastic-coated wire bits
  • FINE CARPENTERS: interesting wood shapes, wood shaving 'curls'
  • MACHINE OR METAL SHOPS: metal cutouts (will need to be checked for sharp edges)
  • DEPARTMENT STORES: broken jewelry, odd scarves, decorative materials
 
  • PRINTERS OR COPY SHOPS: white and colored papers and copy overruns
  • OFFICES: any obsolete letterheads, order books, notebooks
  • PHYSICIANS AND DENTISTS: picture posters stressing healthy activities
  • TILE STORES: mixed tile scraps
  • BOOKSTORES: posters bookmarks
  • TRAVEL AGENCIES: posters, outdated brochures
  • PAINT AND WALLPAPER STORES: outdated wallpaper books, paint swatches, linoleum samples