Quick Page to get started and to have fun with your kids Inventing!
Please take 5 minutes to watch this super cool and cute video displaying the basics of Invention Convention from Cub Scout aged kids then see “How to Start” below! -ProTip: Please watch this with your Scout and Family!!!
Pack 735’s Invention Convention MOVED to our March Pack Meeting, from 6-8:30PM at St Athanasius on Haverhill St in Reading. (not St Agnes)! -Set up between 6-6:30PM, Opening is at 6:30PM and Invention Convention kick off at 6:45PM
We’ll have Den level Presentations, Inventions, STEM fun, Awards and more’s. Don’t miss this event. Wear a Mask and Scouts-be in Class A Uniform tucked in and looking sharp!
Keep in Mind: Cub Scouts is a family sport. Our younger Scouts will need your help, guidance & enthusiasm from you, especially K-3rd graders. That said, ideas need to be student/kid driven.
Follow the Cub Scout Motto and “do your best”. Just keep it simple, keep it fun. Participation is better than perfection.
How to start?
- Buy a notebook, which will be your Scout’s “Invention Log”/Journal
- Help Scouts to keep their ideas, drawings or thoughts in the journal
- Follow these seven steps (see detailed ideas below next video)
- Find a problem to solve -usually challenges from daily life/community
- Understand the problem -talk to people who might experience the problem to help think of ways to solve the problem
- Ideate! Make a plan to describe, draw or represent your idea/solution
- Design it! Decide how to make it (remember, drawing it is the “keep it simple” way)
- Build it – Make a “prototype” which can be a cardboard or found object mock-up
- Test it- record how your idea/prototype works. Bonus- find some people who’d benefit and have them use it
- Tell the story- the kids present their idea (5-10min presentation) -see the tri-fold display examples and think, Science Fair!
NEXT- Jump below to see how to make this happen fast and fun!!!
- Participation is the goal. Drawings and Prototypes can be “crude”. The idea to is to introduce our Scouts to the Invention process. Kids LOVE doing this. They just need your help getting started
- These are great activities to complete over the Holiday Break. Not only will your kids remember your time together, these also can be used to fend off the dreaded “screen time overload”
- Start with the end in mind. ReWatch the first video with your Scout, paying close attention to the Invention displays… build the display as you go!
Making it happen in 15min blocks of time:
Step 1- Find a problem to solve -in 15min
-Great problems are all around us and great inventions usually start with everyday problems.
Grab your Invention Log/Notebook and let’s begin!
1. Ask your Scout to think of something that is hard to do or something they think could be easier.
2. Write down any problems they think of. Common problems can be related to moving something, lifting something, cleaning, organizing, finding, viewing, opening, closing or holding something etc. Those problems are often centered on common tasks like getting ready for school, entertaining, reading, playing, studying or others like, cooking dinner, moving from one place to another & finding one’s way, or overcoming a physical or mental hurdle.
3. After discussing different types of problems, ask them which problem they’d like to solve (their invention target). Have your Scout describe the problem on a video or by writing it down.
Step 2 – Understand the problem and the audience -in 15min
1. Take the selected problem and ask your scout, “if we solved this problem, who would benefit?” Talk to them and your family about their future invention’s audience.
2. Make a list of people who might benefit either in a video or by writing. These people could be kids, parents, grandparents, or professionals like engineers, builders, medical pros or teachers, etc.
3. After you brainstorm who people who might benefit, ask your Scout why they think it’s important to solve this problem. …write that answer down in the log book.
(Parents can help kids who’ve not learned to write fully)
Step 3 – Ideate & develop a plan or diagram that describes a solution to the problem -in 15min
1. Start by asking your Scout to describe a solution to their problem- Ask, “how would you solve this? What could you make that would make this easier or solve this problem?” Let them describe and help them along if they need some help.
2. Grab some paper or their Invention Log book and create drawings or written descriptions of ways to solve their selected problem. Have your Scout spend 10minutes drawing ideas.
3. Ask your Scout, “of all the ideas you came up with, which one do you think is best?” Review their ideas. Help them to choose and name their favorite solution. This will become their Invention project.
Step 4 – Design and Refine the selected idea -in about 15min
1. Take their selected “solution idea” and have them create a more detailed picture of their invention. No two kids are alike, so some kids will have an easier time “describing” their invention in video, some will want to write it down with paragraphs and others will want to draw it. Bonus, if your Scout incorporates all three ways of designing!
2. After they have a good “picture/description” of their invention, help them write down or draw how they might “make it”
Step 5 – Build a “prototype” -in 15min
1. Gather cardboard, tape, clue or “found objects” that can be used to “mock up” their invention
2. Help your Scout “make” a prototype which communicates their idea/invention. Note, this doesn’t have “work”. The goal is simply to make a physical, 3d version of their invention.
3. After the mocked up prototype is complete, ask your Scout to hold it and then describe why it solves the original problem. After they described this to you, say, “let’s test it and put it to action”
Step 6 – Test it! See how the Invention works – in 15min
1. Grab the prototype and your Scouts Invention Log and then use or pretend to use their invention.
2. In their Invention Log, have your Scout write down or describe, how it worked. Asked, “what worked well?” and ask, “if you could make it work better, what would you do different?”
3. Based on test results, make another prototype, if needed.
Step 7 – Communicate the Invention -make your display -in about 15min
1. Working together, make a tri-fold display as shown in the videos above. This display will include Invention Name, Problem Description, Audience/User Description, Pictures/Copies from Ideation and Design along with their prototype(s) -just like the “Banana Shield” picture above
2. Help your Scout to describe their project and tell others why it matters, noting how the solution solves a problem
3. Bonus- create a 5min video of your Scout presenting their idea – use this same description during the Invention Convention
You can find more ideas here:
Take a moment to watch this inspiring video which shows even more ideas.– thx Chad
Invention Convention is a large, public venue and proper
expectations about behavior and projects
should be considered.
The following items are not allowed on your person or in your project:
1. no Electric stun guns, martial arts weapons or
2. no Guns, replica guns, ammunition, fireworks or projectiles
3. no Knives of any size
4. no Mace and pepper spray or dangerous chemicals
5. no Razors and box cutters
5. no Balloons, glitter or confetti (we must be mindful to keep the presentation space clean)
Everything we do in Cub Scouts must be Scout Appropriate and adhere to BSA Youth Protection Rules and Guidelines and the Guide To Safe Scouting.