Monday, June 25, 2007

Kids Can Be Inventors!

Hi everyone! This post is coming to you directly from the hotel lobby somewhere in Rolla, Missouri! I'll be home tonight but I wanted to get at least one post up before then! Here you go!

I was watching a reality show the other night, in which people showed their inventions to a group of judges, and the judges voted, American Idol style, whether the inventors could move on to the next level of the contest. Most of the wanna-be inventors were adults, and some had some really weird ideas. But there was one nin-year-old girl who came up with an interesting invention... musical sneakers! The sneakers would play music so that the wearer could easily dance or run to music any time they wanted.
Unfortunately, the judges shot the little girl's idea down... and she burst into tears.
I hope that little girl goes on to keep putting her invention out in the world and showing it to more people. After all, kids have been inventing things since long before this reality show was invented!
Take Taylor Hernandez, for example. In 2005, when she was only ten years old, she invented Magic Sponge Blocks. Taylor had a younger brother and sister who loved to build with blocks, and the children wanted their mother to find some boxes or other large materials that they could use as giant building blocks, to build forts and other things. Their mother was worried about where all of these large blocks would be stored, so she didn't help the kids find something. It occurred to Taylor that if someone invented a building block that was large, but could be easily compressed and stored, her siblings and her mother would be happy! Taylor made foam blocks that had magnets hidden inside, so they could be compressed and stacked together. She entered the blocks in an inventing competition for kids, and won! Her blocks are now being created and sold by Foamables.
One young inventor was only three years old! Natalie spent a lot of time in her car seat. She would often start to fall asleep, but was never very comfortable in her car seat! She asked her mom to help her make a pillow that could be attached to the car sea, one that was shaped to support a child's head comfortably. Natalie's invention is now awaiting a patent!
Then there is Brandon who, at age nine, visited a children's hospital and realized how frightened children got when they had to get frequent shots and blood tests. He decided to invent the Needle Beetle. Its a little squeezable stress toy that looks like a ladybug. While getting shots or blood tests, children play with the Needle Beetle. It helps them relieve their anxiety, distracts them, and makes their veins easier for the doctors to find. The Needle Beetle is now being produced by Mattel!
Those are only three of the many young inventors in our world! Kids are known for having creative, bright ideas... and when kids are brave enough to take their ideas out in public, the sky is the limit!
To read more about kids and what they're inventing, check out the site By Kids For Kids!

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