Made in Your Mind: Instructables and the Children's Museum of Houston

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The Children's Museum of Houston is running an exhibit based entirely off of Instructables. The hands-on exhibits are from projects submitted by Instructables' authors, the physical exhibit itself is made up of furniture and display projects on the site, and the museum is encouraging visitors to sign up to share their own creations on Instructables. Pretty awesome stuff, and a field trip that will encourage even the most stoic chaperone to break down and make something with the kids. From their exhibit proposal:

Based on the concepts of the Instructables website (www.instructables.com) and similar websites, this exhibit will encourage families to build objects out of easily accessible and/or found materials. The overall appearance of the exhibit will be “rough-hewn,” consisting of nothing but items from Instructables.com (even if we have to post the Instructable) including furniture, frames, etc., each with a QR code that will link the visitor to the appropriate Instructable. Examples of projects line the walls while ideas for new projects (the “simple project” posters) are hanging on the walls along with posters that detail how to perform certain key skills.

The exhibit will run from May to November 2012. If you're in Houston with a child who might like to make some awesome stuff, you should stop by. Teachers, schedule those fall field trips immediately.

Main Goals and Objectives:

Children and their caregivers will utilize problem solving and critical thinking when working through and modifying their projects
Children and their caregivers will communicate about the projects and their reasoning for making changes to them
Children and their caregivers will explore the STEM-related content underlying their projects’ functionality
Children and their caregivers will describe what impact their modifications have to the functionality of the projects and the causes for the changes
Children and their caregivers will develop an appreciation for DIY projects and seek out additional DIY opportunities


Main Messages

Anyone can build and create
Creating your own projects is fun and informative
Math and science concepts explain why projects work (or don’t work)
Talking and working with others is a great way to solve problems
Applying reasoning when modifying projects may make them work even better


Each of these projects should work for children between the ages of 5 and 12. Some modification may be required, but I'm certain you can pull it off. You're on Instructables, after all.

A DIY version of AirZooka. A simple air cannon that will shoot puffs of air in the shape of torus (AKA: Rings). Add smoke and you get smoke rings.
A CD hovercraft with a ballon. Great time waster. My first instructable.
In this Instructable, I will show how to make my version of a bristlebot. It is small, easy to make, and uses very little materials. Pros: -Very little materials -easy to make -Fun to play with Cons...
Easy.for other paper hats look http://www.metacafe.com/watch/835221/unbelievable_easy_amazing_paper_hat/http://www.metacafe.com/watch/846119/learn_to_make_paper_hat_origami_stapler/for paper flower ba...
Make a kite out of household stuff! A really easy and small kite that kids will love to play with. It doesn't fly high or far, but it dances around in a good bit of wind.
A fast, long range, and nimble aircraft, the Dragonfly is a small airplane with two variations that fill somewhat different roles. The "-1" variant is heavier and has a larger wing for long, smooth...
standard duct tape wallet with 2 pockets for cards. this takes about 30 minutes to make. i like it because you can customize to exactly the size you want. the main trick to making a nice duct tape wa...
Make a small musical instrument that really works from things you can find around your office! (By "really works", I mean that you can actually play simple tunes on it. I can play Mary Had a Little ...
This instructable will show you how to make a simple toy hovercraft for small children. It is suitable for daycare projects, science projects (aerodynamics and gyroscopes) as well as general fun. This...
Developed by the Graffiti Research Lab a division of the Eyebeam R&D OpenLab, LED Throwies are an inexpensive way to add color to any ferromagnetic surface in your neighborhood. A Throwie consists of ...
A LED Parachutie is basically a LED Throwie with a small parachute attached to it. You can toss it out from a tall building, bridge, mountain etc.When it's dark, you don't see the parachute itself, bu...
I used to ship a lot of computer equipment for my work. We would end up with a lot of small pieces of bubble wrap that weren't good for very much. One time, I wrapped a piece up in a tight ball with s...
in this 'ible i will make a kazoo out of household items. 
This Instructable will show you how to make a simple, easy-to-make, easy-to-fly, paper kite that is great for kids.
So, Launch It...hmmmm...I've got a simple rocket I could do, or quite a good glider... but, which to do?I know - I'll combine the two!See the resulting video in step four.
How to make easy magnetic paper dolls for the refrigerator for cheap! I love to cook but Ive started to babysit my nephew... trying to entertain him and cook at the same time can be a little hard fo...
Some years ago, a local organisation was asking us to come out an idea in making a paper flying butterfly based on the commercial available one. It should be easy for children to make and low cost.The...
Today you will learn how to make a Rubberband Friendship Bracelets!!!
This originally designed to be indoor, but will work outdoors.Make an indoor/outdoor boomerang that actually comes back.I recently bought a three winged boomerang, it is the only boomerang that I hav...
I have been making these little lights for years now with students. They are very easy to make and work surprisingly well. I actually kept one in the glove-box of my car for many years and used it of...
I have always been fascinated by the pinwheel. Just looking at it spin in the wind makes me happy. I believe it’s a cool toy that can work great as part of a room’s decor. Pinwheels can come in many d...
This instructable shows how to make a top with a paperclip easy to make and really cheap
An astonishing flying cylinder that uses the principles of a gyroscope to fly incredible distances!! Even better it requires nothing but a sheet of paper!!! Here is what you need: -1 piece of pape...
This is my first instructable so i hope it's nice.Ever wanted to make a toy from paper?Now you can make a cheap and powerful one which has a range of 50-75 feet!
 This was an idea that came to me when I had a box cutter in one hand, and a coffee cup on the other, and I literally made it in 2 minutes. It's a quick and easy way that is good for entertaining kids...
You need just one piece of paper . No glue :)for crazy star cubehttp://www.metacafe.com/watch/1014711/crazy_star_cube_nice_paper/for cylinder http://www.metacafe.com/watch/928529/crazy_paper_cylinder_...
This is a nice buzzing instrument that you can blow through to make noise.
A spectroscope is an instrument used to break light up into its constituent colors, just like a prism does, showing the light spectrum. Save money with this DIY physics project, by making authentic sc...
This is the third lesson from a Simple Circuit Unit that I created for middle school and high school students. It is fun and involves hands-on learning. For more cool hands-on engineering projects che...
This Instructable covers how I made two Valentine's Day thaumatropes for my girlfriend instead of a card. What is a thaumatrope? Here's the wiki article en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thaumatrope, but basical...
Monsters can walk over water, everybody knows that. But how do they do it!? It looks so easy for them, but try to do it yourself... Wet feet will be your reward for trying. The answer to this mystery...
Build a Zoetrope and make your own movies!
Build a mini air cannon! This is one of the 48 projects for our Instructables: Made In Your Mind (IMIYM) exhibition at the Children's Museum of Houston showing from May 26, 2012 - November 4, 2012. P...
Design a toy hovercraft! This is one of the 48 projects for our Instructables: Made In Your Mind (IMIYM) exhibition at the Children’s Museum of Houston showing from May 26, 2012 - November 4, 2012. P...
Build your own pet "robot!" This is one of the 48 projects for our Instructables: Made In Your Mind (IMIYM) exhibition at the Children’s Museum of Houston showing from May 26, 2012 - November 4, 2012...
Build a pocket-sized rocket launcher! This is one of the 48 projects for our Instructables: Made In Your Mind (IMIYM) exhibition at the Children’s Museum of Houston showing from May 26, 2012 - Novemb...