Get bitten by the building bug, as you bring a butterfly, bee or beetle to life. You’ll use conductive tape, a watch battery, a guitar string and LEDs to create an tiny critter that blinks its eyes at you as it switches on and off in the breeze. After you’ve constructed this small electrical circuit, decorate it with pipecleaners, feathers and fur.
Why we like it
What are the qualities we value in this activity?
Science and Art Connections
This activity will help you build upon your scientific understanding of circuits and how electricity flows through them. You’ll experience which materials conduct electricity, how to make a strong connection, and how LEDs are directional. After you do this, you will have a chance to turn your circuit into any sort of critter you can imagine by decorating it with inspiring materials.
Connection to the Real World
Nowadays many of the items to rely on contain circuits—your cell phone, iPod, watch, computer… Understanding more about how circuits work will help you better comprehend how these items work, and how they can break. You may even gain the skills you need to (carefully) fix a circuit on one of these machines by yourself.
In order to manipulate the tiny pieces in this activity, you will need to use pliers. Pliers are a good tool to practice, as they are commonly used to fix many situations while building.
STEM as a means, not an end
This activity focuses on science and technology education, but indirectly. You’ll gain a better understanding of these topics while you have fun expressing yourself by making a tiny bug.