We built our own remote control car.
Hands-on toys that teach are my favorites. My son enjoys building toys, but has always preferred gadgets with moving parts.
The Thames & Kosmos Remote Control Machines kit comes with parts to build several remote control machines. Gears are one fundamental component in many mechanical devices, and the literature that comes with the kit begins with hands-on activities that teach the basics of gears.
We are looking forward to the remaining five more complex machines and then exploring more independently. In addition to the remote control machine kit, Thames and Kosmos also sells a physics workshop, an air and water power kit, a wind power kit and a few others. If the others are as good as this one they will become birthday/Christmas gifts in the future.
What mechanical/engineering kits and toys do your children enjoy? I'm especially interested to hear if any of you have used the programmable Legos? What kits/models do you recommend?
Here's a list of excellent blog hops to get even more educational activity ideas.
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