Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
Our family has enjoyed working together on the projects included in our Family Design Challenges Kit from Pitsco Education. This is a great way to add STEM projects to your homeschool!
We actually spent many nights after supper working on projects together. The box included basic household items–such as straws, clothespins, construction paper, tape, marbles, cardboard tubes, paper clips, and several other common items.
One challenge we did was to try to make something using those items that could move “waste” (the marbles) across land. We worked with straws, cardboard tubes, newspaper, and paper to try to find a way to make a vehicle. Each child gave their suggestions and made their own attempts at putting something together. It was actually a great opportunity for us to see how each of our children’s minds work. Our twelve-year-old wanted to draw out a plan first. She needed step-by-step instructions. Our nine-year-old just wanted to put something together quickly and see whether it worked from trial and error. And our six-year-old wanted it to look pretty!
Here’s a video of how they collaborated together:
And here is a video of the final product:
It took us a while to figure things out, but I think the kids had a fun time working together to use the materials on hand to build something together.
They were hooked and ready to try some more projects. We really struggled to make an alphabet block out of the materials we were given.
I think we can safely say that we failed at this project! But the kids had fun making their own blocks and comparing them to each other.
But I think the favorite activity involved the marshmallow (probably because I let them eat the rest of the bag as a treat!). We had to figure out how to use the materials to create something to spin a marshmallow around five times. We tried each kid’s idea on this project and determined that our son’s was the best. But you decide:
As you can see, the twelve-year-old gave up on her idea, but she still had fun trying to figure it out with us!
I was excited to be able to review this kit as it gave us some hands-on projects to work on together as a family. I felt like the box came with some great ideas and had a lot of supplies to work with. My one suggestion to Pitsco Education would be to include a teacher/parent guide, so we can see some suggestions of how to go about starting the projects. My husband and I are not of the engineering minds, so there were a few projects we struggled to even start simply because we didn’t know what was expected. We went to the website, but the one video was only helpful for one project. We really would have appreciated a tip or two in the instructions.
But overall, I think it was a great family bonding experience. We actually wouldn’t mind trying out some of the other kits that Pitsco Education offers. I believe it was a great way for the kids to learn how to create and express their own ideas within our family. While all of our projects didn’t turn out exactly how we envisioned, I think that the time we spent working together was even more valuable.
But you don’t just have to enjoy our videos! Pitsco Education wants you to have a chance to experience the Family Design Challenges Kit, too! They’re giving another kit away now! Just enter on their site before August 31 for your chance to win.
This is just one of the many great kits that Pitsco Education offers. If you want to find out about more of their products, check out what the rest of the Review Crew has to say: