What can you do with a small motor?

We made scribble-bots this week. (Learn how: https://inventorsoftomorrow.com/2017/05/22/scribble-bots/)

That means we’re sending our students home for the summer with a 1.5-3 v motor and a battery pack. I wanted to give them suggestions for other projects they could try at home. These are all parent-child projects, not things the kids would do on their own… Check these out:

1. My Car Design – A printable cardstock template for the body, some wheels and axles, a motor and a fan propeller make for a fun project.


2. An electric fan with water bottles. Video tutorial here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsuYTL1kvsI  and here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=sDeiOLhsyrc

3. A hovercraft with foam tray: www.instructables.com/id/Fifteen-Minute%2C-Self-propelled-hovercraft/ or a paper plate and cup: www.cswnetwork.org/projects/projectDetails.php?projID=124  (Click on “write-up” for their instructions)  Here’s their video:

4. A wobble-bot: https://researchparent.com/homemade-wobblebot/

Homemade Wobblebot by ResearchParent.com

5. Water Bottle Car: www.instructables.com/id/Electric-Bottle-Car/ and www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=13&v=UnxNe_XjlWg

Picture of Complete the Car

6. A propeller car: http://www.miniscience.com/kits/CAR_PROP/  and here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=szQli2Pg1q0 and here: https://researchparent.com/homemade-propeller-car/

More ideas for cars and trucks: Design Squad’s Motorized Car project. http://pbskids.org/designsquad/pdf/parentseducators/ds_pe_event_guide_motorized_car.pdf  or another motorized car challenge: http://billingsgazette.com/news/local/education/fast-learning-students-race-homemade-cars-test-science-skills-at/article_8ece347b-1443-5aed-9d05-ee7c7f9fadd2.html; https://graemek99.wordpress.com/2010/06/11/4-wheel-drive-car/; www.youtube.com/watch?v=avz3nybBfoEhttps://researchparent.com/simple-homemade-robot-car/

7. A more advanced project: a helicopter from a water bottle, popsicle sticks, and two motors. www.youtube.com/watch?v=_CG9MCclbAs

If you don’t already own a 1.5-3 V motor, but want to try out these projects, I recommend Teacher Geek’s 1.5-3 V Motor with Alligator Clip Leads and AA Battery Holder. I like these because the clips are so easy to attach to the battery pack. There are other products listed on my ScribbleBot page.

Mini Gear has lots of how-to videos for projects, including several that use a small motor, including cars, boats, copters and more: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNZMEiM-ZMYmEk2CG3mr1_Q/videos 

What projects have you built with small motors?


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