Children love science, solving problems, and being creative, and that’s why Invention Conventions are such celebrated events, whether they are being held at the classroom level or across an entire school district. During an Invention Convention, children are encouraged to think about problems that occur during day-to-day life, and to undergo efforts using science, problem solving, and creativity to come up with a solution.
You can check out this great Udemy course to learn more about the science of creativity and share this information with the young inventors in your family.
Identifying a Problem
The process of coming up with Invention Convention ideas is identifying the problem that you want to solve. While it can be tempting for parents to come up with problems for their child, it is usually best to let the kids brainstorm. Help them come up with ideas by asking them about things that they find difficult, or things that they find to be a nuisance.
Many adults may not even think about problems that exist on a child’s level, such as being too small or not being strong enough to perform certain tasks. This is a great starting point, and having an actual interest in it will inspire children to be proactive in their approach to coming up with a solution.
Where to Look for Ideas
So where can you start to look for a problem that needs solving. The answer is pretty simple – almost anywhere. However, the best place to start looking is right in your very own home. There are bound to plenty of areas that kids think can be made better with just a little bit of innovation. This blog posts has great examples of innovation that can act as a great source of inspiration for kids.
Ask your children what they find difficult, or whether there is anything that they think could be made better with a little bit of creative thinking. You can also look to other environments that kids frequent, such as the classroom, the car, or out at the park.
Here are some other things to consider:
- Have a budding environmentalist on your hands? Think of ideas that could make recycling or conserving water easier.
- Kids who love to take part in sports may have their own ideas for training.
- Kids who hate certain household chores such as taking out the trash can easily be encouraged to come up with ideas to make it easier and more fun.
One more thing to consider – in the modern day and age, some of the solutions kids are really interested in may be for the computer. A coding course for kids, such as that available on Udemy, can be a great way to start teaching kids basic computer skills.
Coming up With Solutions
Once your child has an idea in mind for a problem that they would like to solve, it’s time to start brainstorming. You may already have heard about mind mapping, which is a great brainstorming tool that can help anybody develop their ideas. Consider taking a mind mapping course on Udemy, and you can use the skills that you have learned to help develop your child’s ability to think creatively about solutions to common, everyday problems.
Once you’ve come up with a handful of ideas, you can start the next phase of developing your child’s Invention Convention project.
Use the Scientific Method
You probably learned about the scientific method in your own school days. Employ this process to help your child come up with the ultimate solution to the problem that they have identified.
First things first, the child needs to identify the exact source of the problem. This can be easier said than done. Encourage them to ask questions and to figure out which method they’ve thought of would most easily solve the problem.
This will lead them to come up with a theory about how the problem could be solved. From this point, the child can come up with experiments to test the problem and to come up with a solution.
After enough testing, you should have come up with a project that can be further developed for the Invention Convention.
Once this is all done, all that’s left is preparing the project per the rules laid out in your particular Invention Convention’s guidelines. You’ll want to have an attractive display – consider taking photographs of the invention in question being used so the judges can see how it works. Be sure your child is prepared to answer questions such as why they invented the project and how they developed it, too.
Some kids may want to go further with their invention. Consider this course on teaching children about entrepreneurship if your child decides they want to sell or market their invention afterwards. That can be a great way to encourage them and their efforts.