A few years ago the Denver Museum of Nature and Science had a Da Vinci exhibit where they took a bunch of his engineering designs and sketches and created real-life working models of what he’d invented. It was so cool!
This gift idea is more of a “toy.” You can get it for a daughter, son or even your SO. There are three models to make: Bombard, Catapult and Ballista. You get all three models for just $23.99 ( a $6 savings off List)!
The product page mentions that this “toy” is recommended for ages 14 and up, but if you have a “hands on” dad who can help your child make it, I think it would be “suitable” for ages 8 and up.
Here’s Amazon’s blurb about the product
BUILD THREE REMARKABLE MACHINES – a Ballista (an enormous crossbow), a Bombard (an early form of the cannon) and a mighty Catapult.
SEND PROJECTILES UP TO 15 FEET – Each model is fully functional; the kit comes with 15 projectiles plus 6 paper targets.
EVERYTHING YOU NEED – Assemble each model in 1-3 hours: laser-cut wooden components, rubber bands, sandpaper and clear, simple instructions. No special tools necessary.
AN INCREDIBLE GIFT! These high-quality models are fun to build and even more fun to use! They make an amazing gift and are a fantastic STEM-based activity.
SATISFACTION GUARANTEED – The National Geographic STEM series provides kids high-quality educational toys that are a whole lot of fun! If your experience is anything less than extraordinary, let us know so we can make it right for you.
Get “Da Vinci’s Inventions: Battalion” on Amazon here.
If you have two kids, check out this sweet wooden model, DIY kit too for only $21.99 from NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC:
Solar-Powered Moon Buggy Wooden Model Kit – DIY Solar-Powered Car Includes One 3D Puzzle to Build A Moon Buggy, Great Stem Toy for Girls & Boys Interested in Outer Space & Engineering
- Powered by the sun: solar panel included in the construction kit powers the Moon Buggy and makes it move when in direct sunlight
- Everything you need: laser-cut wooden components, easy-to-follow instructions, solar panel, sandpaper, and learning guide with interesting facts about the Moon and outer space. No need for special tools
- Great 3D puzzle for kids and adults: This solar-powered Moon Buggy is fantastic for kids and adults with an interest in engineering, model-building, and space exploration
- Encourages critical thinking: 3D lunar vehicle model kit engages critical thinking skills in kids during construction
Get the “Solar-Powered Moon Buggy DIY Kit” from Amazon here.
Now… if you have three kids (like me), and you know you can’t buy two of these and leave the third out… check out this set for younger kids.
Check out the Butterfly EduFields 7-in-1 Electric Motor Kit – Build Your own Gadget Electronics kit.
This kit is designed for kids ages 5 and up and promises to “Bring out the hidden scientist in your kid by using our STEM learning toys. It is a good resource for kids ages 5 years and up to encourage early science, engineering, art, electronics, and mechanical principles by challenging them to build their own DIY projects.”
Here is the list of the 7 fun prototypes of gadgets in home you can create: a mini vacuum cleaner, color mixer, massager, table fan, flashlight, water sprinkler and egg beater.
If you clip the 5% off coupon on Amazon Prime, you can get this cool set for only $24.70 on Amazon.
Get the “Butterfly EduFields 7-in-1 Electric Motor Kit” on Amazon here.