I love taking things apart, don't you? An old desk-top computer tower is a treasure-trove of discovery for our students. Use a screw driver. Take this thing out. What the heck is this? What does it do? (Why is it covered in dust?)
OMG it's fun!
And then we dream of ways to put those pieces back to work. Design Thinking meets some Junk Yard tv show.
Used to be useful..and still is!
Here's an old printer, or a keyboard, or something else that has a bunch of electronic bits. Here's an old (but still working) set of 3 solar outdoor path lights. Can we make the solar panel work again?
parents have the coolest stuff...
A parent who owned a few Subway Sandwich shops donated the cash register receipt printers, phones, computers, and whatnot last year and those things kept us busy for weeks. We learned every different kind of screw driver and allen wrench created (at least it seemed like it). We had pieces of plastic and wires and every kind of little motor in Deconstruct Bins everywhere.
I absolutely loved this little worm gear guy! He turns pretty slowly (with the right battery pack) which makes him perfect for a moving part on my Future City model. Watch the video about that!
A friend with a computer repair shop gives us retired hard drives. They are difficult to take apart but the struggle is worth it when you get to those super-strong magnets inside!
We've used those magnets all over the classroom and to make things move on our Future City models. We keep all of those itty-bitty screws, too.
Being a pack-rat means you always have that odd thing that someone needs.