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Suggestions for projects for a kids' electronics club

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Our local library has recently started a kids' electronics club for kids aged 9-15.  I was hoping to get suggestions for projects that would be inexpensive, simple enough for the kids to build on their own, and that would demonstrate a basic concept or how to use a particular component.  Right now, I plan to have them wind their own electromagnets, then we'll let them build a simple LED circuit with a resistor and a switch. 

After that, I'm not sure.  I'm not a professional, just a tinkerer, really, so I'd like to get the thoughts of people with more experience than me.

When I was younger I always liked to build stuff that I can use or carry around with me, mostly simple circuits with some practicality value.

Some ideas:
- LED blinker with two transistors
- an audio amplifier (the simplest one with an IC first)
- don't know if it's still feasible these days but you can build a simple AM radio receiver. You will need: an exterior antenna (some suspended wire); good ground; a ferrite loop that they can wound by themselves; a big-ass air variable cap; a diode; a transistor; resistors and a speaker. Very steam-punk but you'll love the look on their faces when they will catch the first radio station
- FM transmitter with a microphone
- a rain detector
- an automatic (sunset) light switch
- an electronic alarm using a switch on a door
- some kind of a flashing badge
- you can also obtain discarded electronics and let the kids disassemble them

One experiment for brothers to do: give an electric shock to someone using a small audio transformer and a pair of AA batteries.

That is the experiment I blame for getting me interested in electronics. (and is one reason by brother is in his company's health and safety board)


Btipton, where abouts are you located?

Have a look on Ebay and see if you can find a 200 in one electronics kit like this one. http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Science-Fair-200-1-Electronic-Project-Kit-Rare-/110622311000?pt=UK_Toys_Creative_Educational_RL&hash=item19c19a8258. Then with a little ingenuity you could make your own kits (or bread board individual  circuits) just make sure you get then manual!!.If you get REALLY stuck I THINK I have a photocopy of the manual in the attic I could copy for you, but that will be after Christmas as I'm not going back up there again till we put the christmas deccys away again (It's a real pain in the ass and a bit of a bombsite ;D).I think Dave did a blog on his 200 in one kit but not sure of the number any one remember? Dave?


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