1.1 Article: “Four Ways to Cultivate Community at Home”
1.2 Exploring Inventions Together
1.3 Encouraging Creativity
1.4 Inventions and Their Effects on Life
1.5 Inventions: From Creation to Fruition

It has been said that necessity is the mother of invention. Everything we have and use has been created by God or invented. Our lives are affected by the many inventions that have been created, whether we use those items or are the beneficiary of their existence. How many inventions have affected our lives as homeschoolers?

1.1 Article: “Four Ways to Cultivate Community at Home”

Cultivating community at home is not a new invention, but it is a necessary effort. Community is a not naturally occurring commodity. Kim Hyland, writing for God-Sized Dreams, shares four ways you can cultivate community in your home.

http://www.godsizeddreams.com/four-ways-cultivate-community-home

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1.2 Exploring Inventions Together

This inventions timeline can provide a great entry point into a unit study on inventions. How do inventions build on one another? When was the wheel invented and what inventions utilize the benefits of the wheel?

www.datesandevents.org/events-timelines/09-inventions-timeline.htm 

ThoughtCo. has a handy database of inventions that includes clickable links to short descriptions of each invention, the need that inspired each invention, and the inventor.

www.thoughtco.com/famous-inventions-adhesives-to-automobile-1991227 

The disciplines of engineering and inventing crossover into similar territories. Engineers can use their training and skills to invent things, but inventors do not necessarily have to have the formal training necessary to obtain the title of engineer. Still, encouraging an interest in engineering might just spark the creativity to invent a new product.

http://suzieshomeeducationideas.blogspot.com.au/2014/12/10-ways-to-support-interest-in.html 

The National Inventors Hall of Fame and Museum in Alexandria, Virginia would make a great family field trip. Currently, exhibits at the museum include the Gallery of Icons, an exhibit on Intellectual Property Power, the 2017 Inductees into the Hall of Fame, as well as an exhibit on Visionary Veterans.

www.uspto.gov/about-us/uspto-locations/alexandria-va/national-inventors-hall-fame-and-museum 

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1.3 Encouraging Creativity

Spur your little inventors on with these recommended STEM: science, technology, engineering, and mathematics books.

www.notimeforflashcards.com/2016/07/stem-picture-books.html 

You can encourage your preschoolers to tinker with woodworking by creating a woodworking area. Who knows what they will invent?

www.letthechildrenplay.net/2011/02/ideas-for-woodworking-area-at-preschool.html 

These 24 stem projects for toddlers will help your preschoolers explore the world around them and encourage creative investigation.

www.schoolingamonkey.com/stem-projects-toddlers 

The United States Patent and Trademark Office has downloadable coloring books about patents, trademarks, and inventors.

www.uspto.gov/kids/coloring.html

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1.4 Inventions and Their Effects on Life

Your elementary students can read about 40 inventors in this database from Biography Online. In these short bios, you will find the name of the inventor and a description of the invention. You can click on the name of some of the inventors to be directed to more detailed information on that inventor.

www.biographyonline.net/scientists/inventors.html  

This collection of ancient inventions from the Smith College Museum of Ancient Inventions, may help you tie your study of inventions to your study of history.

www.smith.edu/hsc/museum/ancient_inventions/hsclist.htm 

Your students might enjoy reading books from this list: Books to Inspire Kids to Tinker, Invent and Engineer.

www.whatdowedoallday.com/kids-books-for-inventors-and-engineersventors-and-engineers  

450 children in the UK were asked to come up with ideas for inventions. Of 600 drawings, 60 were chosen by Dominic Wilcox, a designer and inventor, for creation. Wilcox took the drawing to manufacturers and had the inventions constructed. This website features 15 of those inventions.

www.boredpanda.com/kids-inventions-turned-into-reality-inventors-project-dominic-wilcox 

Fidget cubes and spinners are all the rage right now. Rather than spend money to purchase one, why not have your child build his own? You can download the instructions to build a Lego fidget cube from bricks you may already have. Once your child has completed this one, challenge them to build one of their own inventing.

http://lemonlimeadventures.com/how-to-make-an-epic-diy-lego-fidget-cube

One way to encourage creativity and inventing is to provide the necessary supplies. You can use the suggestions here to create an inventor’s box.

https://theeducatorsspinonit.com/2014/09/build-inventors-box-stem-activity-for.html 

The United States Patent and Trademark Office has activities to introduce your students to inventions and inventors. You will find coloring pages as well as instructions to build four inventions and a spot the invention interactive activity.

www.uspto.gov/kids/activities.html 

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1.5 Inventions: From Creation to Fruition

Inventions are everywhere. If you use something that is not naturally occurring, someone probably invented it. This list includes the top 10 inventions that were created by teens prior to entering college.

www.toptenz.net/top-10-world-changing-inventions-created-by-young-people.php 

Creating a video game might pique the interest of your teen. Lifehacker has compiled a list of the best free tools for making your own video games.

http://lifehacker.com/the-best-free-tools-for-making-your-own-video-games-1689905461/amp 

Once your budding inventor has created his new video game or other invention, he will need to research how to get that product to market. Business News Daily maps out the process from dreaming to producing a new product.

www.businessnewsdaily.com/8773-turn-your-idea-into-a-product.html 

Along the same vein, Entrepreneur has an article entitled “5 Steps for Turning Your Invention Ideas Into a Product.”

www.entrepreneur.com/amphtml/77962 

Smithsonian magazine has a plethora of articles on inventing and inventions. Your teen could use this information to research and report on new inventions and their potential for use in society.

www.smithsonianmag.com/search/?sort=newest&q=Inventions 

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