Tinkerlab : A Hands-On Guide for Little Inventors

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55 playful experiments that encourage tinkering, curiosity, and creative thinking from the creator of Tinkerlab.com--hands-on activities that explore art, science, and more. For children two and up. Kids are natural tinkerers. They experiment, explore, test, and play, and they learn a great deal about problem-solving through questions and hands-on experiments. They don't see lines between disciplines; rather, they notice interesting materials and ideas that are worth exploring. This book is about creative experiments, in all fields, that help kids explore the world. Children gravitate toward sensory experiences (playing with slime), figuring out how things work (taking toys apart), and testing the limits of materials (mixing a tray of paint together until it makes a solid mass of brown). They're not limited by their imaginations, and a wooden spoon can become a magic wand as quickly as a bag of pom-poms can become a hot bowl of soup. This book is about helping parents and teachers of babies, toddlers, and preschoolers understand and tap into this natural energy with engaging, kid-tested, easy-to-implement projects that value process over product. The creative experiments shared in this book foster curiosity, promote creative and critical thinking, and encourage tinkering--mindsets that are important to children growing up in a world that values independent thinking. In addition to offering a host of activities that parents and teachers can put to use right away, this book also includes a buffet of recipes (magic potions, different kinds of play dough, silly putty, and homemade butter) and a detailed list of materials to include in the art pantry.show more

Product details

  • 12-17
  • Paperback | 304 pages
  • 176 x 238 x 14mm | 559.99g
  • Shambhala Publications Inc
  • Roost Books
  • Boston, United States
  • English
  • Full colour throughout
  • 161180065X
  • 9781611800654
  • 45,927

About Rachelle Doorley

RACHELLE DOORLEY is an arts educator, community builder, and founder of the popular creativity blog Tinkerlab. She studied costume design at the University of California, Los Angeles, and worked on Hollywood films before finding her true calling as an arts educator. After teaching art in Los Angeles schools, Rachelle earned a master's in arts education from Harvard, and then oversaw docent and education programs at the San Jose Museum of Art. Rachelle lives with her husband and her two curious daughters in the beautiful San Francisco Bay Area, where she leads workshops on visual thinking and hands-on creativity. Rachelle believes in finding fun and meaningful ways to make every day creative, and can often be found experimenting in her sketchbook, taking her kids on adventures, and asking lots of open-ended questions. Rachelle enjoys chai tea, hand-drawn letters, train travel, hikes in the woods, artist studios, and ocean air.show more

Review quote

"I highly recommend Tinkerlab to any parent with young children! I read the book in one sitting (it was that well written) but know I will be referring back to it for years as I encourage my own daughters' tinkering, experimenting, and creative development."--Jean V'ant Hul, author of The Artful Parent "I love Tinkerlab! This book is a glorious invitation for wonder and delight. The teacher in me respects the approach to creativity, process, and self-directed exploration. The mom in me is charmed by the easy-access of materials and projects. Fun! Fun! Fun!"--Lynn Brunelle, author of Pop Bottle Science "Being playful and creative is such a vital necessity in today's world! As an arts educator and parent of a curious four-year-old, I greatly value and embrace the 'tinkering mindset' at the core of Doorley's Tinkerlab. What an exceptional resource for all ages as we work to include more creative experiences and explorations in our lives."--Michael Murawski, PhD, Director of Education & Public Programs at the Portland Art Museum and Founder and Editor at ArtMuseumTeaching.comshow more

Table of contents

Introduction                                                                                                            Prepare 1. Creating Your Tinkerlab                                                         Tips for Clearing Children’s Clutter by Jillian Maxim                        What Nursery Schools Can Teach Us about Creative Invitations: An Interview with Nancy Howe                                                                            2. Tools for Tinkering                                                                               3. Ten Tinkerlab Habits of Mind                                                                             Experience 4. Design                                                                                                     Oh No, That’s Not Creative! by Jessica Hoffmann Davis                       Experience #1: Circle Games                                            Experience #2: Peel and Stick                                                                   Experience #3: Glue, Glue, Glue                                                                         Experience #4: Mark Outside the Box                                                        Experience #5: Watercolor Exploration                                                          Experience #6: Yes, You Can Paint on That!                                                  Experience #7: Monoprints                                                                             Experience #8: Bubble Prints                                                                             Experience #9: Drawing Games                                                                 Experience #10: Draw What You See                                                                  Experience #11: Art Dice                                                                         Experience #12: Paint Experiments                                                     Experience #13: Paste Paper                                                                               10 Lessons the Arts Teach by Elliot Eisner                                          Experience #14: Marbleized Paper with Paint and Oil                                               Experience #15: Plexiglas Painting                                                                Experience #16: Foam Plate Relief Prints                                                         Experience #17: Collage Painting                                                                      Finding Your Five-Year-Old Self in the Art Museum by Margie Maynard      5. Build The Value of Loose Parts: An Interview with Susan Harris MacKay            Project #1: Gumdrop Structures                                                                        Project #2: Hanging Structures                                                                             Project #3: Straw Rockets                                                          Project #4: Marble Runs: Ramps and Gravity                                                Project #5: Paper Houses                                                                                 Project #6: Scrap Building Project #7: Ropes and Pulleys                                                                            Project #8: CD Spinner                                                   Project #9: Does It Float? Project #10: Pounding Nails                                                                             Project #11: Take Things Apart                                                                         Project #12: Drawing Machine                                                              Project #13: DIY Robot                                                                             DIY Kids: Building Tomorrow’s Innovators through Hands-on Making by Grace Hawthorne                                                                                                          6. Concoct Yes, and . . . How to Improvise with Children: An Interview with Dan Klein         Experiment #1: Potion Station                       Experiment #2: Goop                                                                             Experiment #3: Marker Explosions                                                    Experiment #4: Make Your Own (Semiedible) Paint                                                  Experiment #5: Slime                                                                               Experiment #6: Ice and Salt Exploration                                                             Experiment #7: Ice Cream in a Jar: An Edible Investigation                                      Experiment #8: Frozen Carbon Dioxide                                                                Experiment #9: Yeast and Sugar Expansion                                    Experiment #10: Naked Egg Experiment                                                            Experiment #11: G-Ma’s Butter: An Edible Investigation                                         Experiment #12: Lemon Invisible Ink                                                                    Experiment #13: Glittery Egg Geodes       Experiment #14: Natural Dyes                                                                       Experiment #15: Kitchen Challenge: An Edible Investigation                                   Concoctions in a Michelin-Starred Kitchen: An Interview with Bruno Chemel    7. Discover How to Set Up a Discovery Area that Honors the Child: An Interview with Parul Chandra                                                                                                            Exploration #1: Playdough Building  Exploration #2: Cloud Dough                                                               Exploration #3: Pounding Flowers                                                  Exploration #4: Scavenger Hunts                                                                   Exploration #5: DIY Light Box                                                                   Exploration #6: Photograms                                                                       Exploration #7: Ephemeral Installation                                           Exploration #8: Shadow Investigations                                                  Exploration #9: DIY Lava Lamp                                                              Exploration #10: Mystery Bag                                                                   The Benefits of Basic Materials by Jennifer Winters                                        Acknowledgments                                                                                                      The Busy Parent’s Planner                                                                                   References                                                                                                            About the Contributors                                                                                       About the Author                                                                                               show more

Rating details

387 ratings
4.21 out of 5 stars
5 43% (167)
4 40% (153)
3 14% (53)
2 3% (11)
1 1% (3)
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