Introduction: Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer- Glowing Nose

This activity is used to introduce circuits, conductors and insulators 4th-5th grade, great STEM lesson. After the lesson is taught I introduced this activity to engage and inspire the students to actively understand how circuits, conductors and insulators actually work together. This activity is great because it introduces all of the components of a STEM lesson and it's interactive.



Small Craft Sticks (Jumbo Craft Sticks)

Conductive tape (Maker or copper)

Small Binder Clips (Medium Binder Clip for Jumbo Craft Sticks)

Coin Battery


Elmer's Glue (used for the eyes only)

Screw Driver (size 1.6x40mm)

Jumbo Red LED 10mm

Googly Eyes (optional)

Reindeer template


Step 1: STEP 1: Preparations

To create a reindeer I used the scissors handle to get the shape of the face. Then I free handed the antlers to look similar to a reindeer. I cut out the image and traced it on another sheet of white paper to create a template. You may use any digital software to create your template or you may use this template to create your Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.

I also pre-cut the conductive tape (copper/maker's tape) the length of the craft stick. I also cut out each reindeer and gave each student one to color and shape the antlers. I used the small craft sticks because this is all I had at the time of the project, however it was great for small hands (I believe they could also handle the jumbo craft sticks).

Step 2: Reindeer Face

Before you color or glue the eyes on your reindeer use the tip of a paperclip to make a small hole for his nose, this is helpful because the markers will blot out the pin size dot for the nose on his face. Color the reindeer your preferred color.Then use two small drops of glue to glue the googly eyes on his face. While the glue is drying you may begin constructing the reindeer.

Step 3: Apply Conductive Tape

Apply the conductive tape to the length of both sides (front and back) of the craft stick. Then use a small screwdriver to apply a small hole in the craft stick that goes all the way through the craft stick, so that the negative leg of the Jumbo Red LED 10 mm to fit through.

Step 4: Assemble the Reindeer

During the process of assembling the reindeer it is important to distinguish between the positive and negative leg of the Red 10mm LED. The long side is the positive leg and the short side is the negative leg. Once you have the nose on the reindeer's colored head, bend the positive leg down while the negative leg (short) stays straight. Now stick the negative leg in the hole on the craft stick and bend it down and secure it with more conductive tape. Now turn it to the front and secure the positive leg with more conductive tape.

Congratulations, we have assembled our reindeer using both conductive materials and insulators.

Step 5: Close the Circuit

At the bottom on the front of the reindeer, we will add our battery. Place the battery positive side on the positive side (front) of the craft stick and use the binder clip to secure the battery in place. Please be advised that the students will be working with both hands and may need help when clipping the binder-clip onto the battery and the craft stick all at the same time.Now have the students flip up the binder-clip levers and press the levers on the conductive tape and abracadabra, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer- Glowing Nose. Flip the lever down and his nose stops glowing, saving battery and LED energy.

The binder-clip is also a display stand for your reindeer.

Step 6: Enjoy, Using Your Imagination

This activity has unlimited possibilities such as conductive paints, conductive thread, conductive pens instead of the conductive tape. Give it a try and let me know the outcome. Super excited to hear from you.