I haven’t read the book myself (yet), so this is going to e a book review of a book review, but I very much enjoyed Max Maxfield’s recent article on Electronics for Kids by Oyvind Nydal Dahl.
The book is described by its publisher as a work that “demystifies electricity with a collection of awesome hands-on projects.” Those hands-on projects – 23 in all – are, of course, the key to engaging kids, as most 10 year olds don’t want to read a book that’s all theory. It sounds like it gets kids into things gradually, starting with a simple project (turning a lemon into a battery rather than into lemonade), then moving onto more complex tasks like creating an alarm clock that goes off at sunrise. It also takes kids into the realm of digital electronics, with projects like one for making an electronic coin flipper. (Logic gates and flip-flops made easy!)
Max notes that the book includes parts lists, detailed instructions, and “super-clear” illustrations (diagrams, photos). He also liked that the book includes troubleshooting info for each project, so that kids (and parents) can easily figure out what went wrong, rather than just throwing up their hands in frustration. (Not that the throwing up of hands in frustration ever happened to me when working on a project, on my own or with my kids.)
I’m a “tweener” here. My kids are, respectively, in the work force, in graduate school, and in college. And there are no grandkids in sight just yet. But I do have a nephew who might find this fun. (Beyond kids, Max writes that it would be a fun guide for an electronics novice of any age who wants “to dip their toes in the electronics waters but has no prior knowledge or background in this area.”)
Anyway, it feels a bit odd to be recommending a book that I haven’t (yet) read, this one sounds like a good one.
I especially like that Electronics for Kids will take its kids behind the scenes. With all the technology that kids are exposed to from such a young age, it’s almost a given that they’ll grow up as savvy tech users. This book will help them understand what’s actually going on with all the toys, games, tablets, and phones they’ve got their hands on. It may even inspire some to grow up to be savvy tech makers. Here’s hoping!