On my list last year for 100 things to do in the summer, I had "Take apart a machine." I got the idea from a book my mom had given me called Prime Time Together-- With Kids: Creative Ideas, Activities, Games, and Projects. I thought it was a fun idea and took one of my boys to the thrift store and got an old $4 VCR. And then it sad there annoying my wonderful husband until we finally destroyed it this past spring. With it being so hot all over the country (we're in the 100s again!) I thought it might be good to share an inside activity.
We sort of made this activity into a learning theme. I can't remember the exact books we got from the library, but here are some that would be good resources. I really love the Eyewitness Books and we have quite a few in our own library that I picked up at the thrift store.
After looking through the books, we made absolute sure our VCR was not plugged in.
Then we gathered a few tools.
All three of my kids took their turn twisting, prying, unscrewing, pulling, and exploring the VCR.
It was fun to see where the outside buttons connected once we pulled the cover off.
And to watch how the pulley worked.
Gears are also so very interesting to see in motion.
The circuit board (?) was not only fascinating for the kids to look at, but to touch and feel all the pokes.
I thought it was fun to imagine the pieces as a big city. I wish my husband was home when we took it apart because he understands more about what these things do. I guess maybe I could have read up on it too. :)
Anyway, after an hour plus of destroying and discovering. This is what was left. We may have to try it out again with a different machine. Have fun ruining something!