Dear Caring Adults of K–5 Students,

Hello from the Lemelson-MIT Program in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA!

Pascha and I have enjoyed creating activities for you to share with the children in your lives. Both you and your child/student will explore inventions in the four categories of an annual competition for college inventors. These categories are “Move it!,” “Use it!,” “Eat it!,” and “Cure it!” You’ll read inventors’ stories, watch their videos, and complete activities while thinking like inventors. You can print out the activities, too.

The estimated time for activities in each category is two hours, but take as much time as you and your child/student want! You don’t need to work through the categories in order. If your child/student is particularly interested in one of the categories, start with that one! You can spend the whole week on one category, or sample all of the categories. If you are not sure where to start, “Move it!” may be a fun place to begin. We wish you lots of fun this week!

As a caring adult, we encourage you to post your child’s/student’s invention ideas and solutions in the “Share Your Invention” Forums. We’d love to see and cheer for their inventions from Cambridge!

Pascha and I have included ways to extend the learning at the end of each category. We like to include books for young children. We have included two books. The first book is a wonderful read-aloud book. Not a Box by Antoinette Portis explores what a box is when it’s not a box! This requires an imagination. Another book that we’ve enjoyed with young inventors is What Do You Do With an Idea? by Kobi Yamada. This is a read-aloud book for younger students or a book for students who are 7–8 years of age and starting to read chapter books. Checking books out of libraries is not possible now, but both books are available for the Kindle Cloud Reader. Your local library may have free e-books, too.

We wish you days of happy inventing!

Kind regards,

Leigh Estabrooks and Pascha Griffiths from the Lemelson-MIT Program

P.S. I answer e-mails so don’t hesitate to reach out to me at leighe@mit.edu!

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