Best design and technology home schooling resources

Best design and technology home schooling resources
Make, build, code, construct, design, invent and engineer – each of these websites is packed with design and technology learning to keep your child learning, testing and creating at home.
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Best for hands-on STEM activities

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) home learning teaching resources for 5-11 years old (Key Stage 1 and 2) from the Institution of Engineering and Technology, including lesson plans, handouts and videos.

From investigaing wheels and axels to making rain, constructing your own doorbell or understanding the principles of aerospace engineering, we love this collection of fun, free and engaging activities.

Best for creative technology projects

Mouse Create is a learning platform for STEM and creative computing. In Mouse Open Projects children can choose projects to work on at home and they won't need an account, guidance from an adult or teacher or any materials (hurrah!).

Each project has a lesson plan and step-by-step instructions, so they can just get started – they could learn the basics of stop motion animation, create a GIF in 8-Bit art style, design a mobile app or explore the world through the eyes of a designer.

Best for learning-packed recycling

https://www.smallpeicetrust.org.uk/engineering-at-home
Turn recycling materials into at-home engineering projects with the Smallpeice Trust's [email protected] weekly design challenge. Will your child tackle the Rubber Band Car Challenge, the Paddle Boat Challenge or the Parachute Challenge first?

Each of the [email protected] Challenges are presented in step-by-step videos; share your creations with other budding engineers using the hashtag #EngineeringAtHome.

Best for engineering challenges

 
Can you skewer a balloon without popping it or coat a nail in copper? What happens when you plug a clock into a potato?

The Challenge Cards from the James Dyson Foundation have been prepared specifically for children, to encourage inquisitive young minds to get excited about engineering. There are 44 challenges to complete in the downloadable pack, so there's lots of keep kids busy.

Best for learning through play (and with LEGO)

Six Bricks is a collection of short activities using sets of six LEGO® DUPLO® bricks (or ordinary-sized bricks), to help children boost their creative construction skills.

From building "tricky towers" to recreating patterns and constructing bridge structures, there are lots of design suggestions and simple games and tasks for Reception and KS1 children to have a go at.

Fancy building a whole city made of bricks (or cardboard)? #StoryCity is a collaboratively constructed and imagined city that kids all over the world will be encouraged to share the building of.

Best for a library of engineering-inspired activities

There’s a huge range of family-friendly engineering-inspired activities to choose from on the Engineering - Take a Closer Look website.

Why not make some Frankensnakes, design and build a helicopter using only paper and paperclips, use a drinking straw to pierce through a raw potato or make a bubble inside a bubble inside a bubble with sugar and soap? All the activities can be done at home or outdoors (some will need adult supervision).

Best for developing advanced construction skills

Take bridge-building to another level with a Stephen Lawrence Day architecture challenge: building a bridge that is 30cm wide (the bridge’s ‘span’) and at least 15cm high in the centre, that is able to hold 500g (a bag of sugar or rice) for 10 seconds without collapsing.

Stephen Lawrence Day is about the part we all play in creating a society in which everyone can flourish. Visit their website for more hands-on project ideas themed around the small but powerful ways individuals can make a positive difference and build stronger communities.

Best for encouraging innovative, creative thinking

 
Is your child a budding inventor? If they can come up with a cracking idea to help get boring, tedious jobs done more quickly, better and (most importantly!) from the comfort of a warm armchair, the Intellectual Property Office and Aardman want to hear about it for their Cracking Ideas 2019/20 competition.

Plus there are downloadable design activities and lesson plans for KS1 - KS4 students; each one outlines individual tasks and full resource lists to make it easier to supervise the inventors of the future.

Best for curriculum-mapped technology learning

Tech We Can is a set of free lesson plans designed to be taught by teachers in the classroom but now available to parents and carers for teaching at home. 

The structured, fun learning packs are all about technology careers and seeing the use of technology in everyday lives and are mapped to the National Curriculum. Whether you need resources that are Low Tech (if you have access to the internet but no tablets), Mid Tech (if you have an iPad purchased more than 3 years ago) or Full Tech (f you have access to an iPad or tablet purchased in the last 3 years), watch the introductory video for parents for advice on how to use the resources with your child.

Best for graphic design

Find out more about coin design with the informative Art and Design - Coins in the Classroom resource from the Royal Mint (you can have a go at designing your own 50p, too). From reverse design facts to royal heraldry and heraldic shields information, there's loads to learn from the coins in your purse!

Best for bringing out your competitive side

 
In the spirit of the original Great Exhibition organised by Prince Albert, Queen Victoria's husband, to showcase the most exciting Victorian technology and inventions, students across the country will take part in engineering challenges and create their own Great Exhibition at Home!

To compete you'll need to submit a one-minute video presenting your response to the question: How can engineering help protect the planet? To be in with a chance of winning fantastic prizes including £500 worth of STEM equipment for your school, download a digital resource pack and weekly worksheets and get started!

Best for step-by-step DIY projects

KiwiCo makes science and art subscription "crates", but their free KiwiCo At-Home Resources for Kids (and their grownups) offer free weekly community challenges, easy projects for different ages and abilities, downloadable STEAM activities and some really impressive DIYs to try at home.

Melted crayon art, a mini trampoline, a tick-tock timer and a pendulum wave toy are just a few of the step-by-step projects to choose from. Have fun!