Experiment with Homemade Soap

Experiment with Homemade Soap

Back when Ben Franklin was a kid, making soap was a smelly affair. It’s much easier—and more fun—today. Have an adult help you with the knife and the hot glycerin (soap). Caution: An adult must help you melt the glycerin.
Download a Printer-Friendly PDF
Magnetic Field Viewer

Magnetic Field Viewer

From Electricity

You can see magnetic fields in action with this easy-to-make viewer.

Build a Craft Stick Catapult

Build a Craft Stick Catapult

From Engines!

Ancient armies used catapults in battle. But the catapult has been used as recently as World War I. In that war, soldiers used catapults to toss hand grenades at the enemy. Today, catapults are used to launch planes off the decks of huge ships called aircraft carriers. Because the runway is short on an aircraft carrier, the catapult helps get the plane into the air quickly. Try making your own!

The STEM in Your Closet

The STEM in Your Closet

From The Science of Fashion

Have you ever really thought about what kind of science, engineering, and technology actually go into making your clothes? Now is your chance! The zipper on your jacket was at one time an engineering miracle. The shirt that has built-in protection from the sun’s ultraviolet rays is a scientific innovation that helps to keep you healthy. There is a world of science and engineering in your closet. Just open the door.

Build the Eiffel Tower

Build the Eiffel Tower

From The Science and Technology of Marie Curie

Built in 1889 for the World Exposition, the Eiffel Tower honored the French Revolution. It also showcased national engineering and design expertise to an audience of global visitors. Originally intended as a temporary monument, it remains one of the world’s most visited landmarks. The structure of the tower itself is actually quite simple! To understand how its rivets and beams join, build a model of your own.



Praise for other titles by Alicia Klepeis:

Gutsy Girls Go for Science: Astronauts
The Children’s Book Review
“The books in this series are excellent primary resources and would be worthwhile additions to not only the personal library for future scientists but for classroom libraries as well.”

Explore Makerspace With 25 Science Projects
NSTA Recommends
“. . .  author Alicia Klepeis and illustrator Matt Aucoin demonstrate how a design and engineering center can work with ordinary materials and not much technology. The book is intended for children ages 7–10, although older students might well extend the scope of the activities well past the basics presented in each chapter.” Click to read more.

The Renaissance Inventors: With History Projects for Kids
Dig Magazine
The Renaissance Inventors by Alicia Z. Klepeis is one in the new series “The Renaissance for Kids.” Each chapter is devoted to an inventor: Gutenberg, Alberti, da Vinci, and Mercator. Sidebars, well chosen illustrations and photos, along with a variety of boxes (Fast Facts, Wonder Why?, Words of Wonder, Connect, History’s Mysteries, and more) combine with 10 hands-on projects to make this an unforgettable read! Other titles are: “Artists,” “Explorers,” and “Thinkers”! Have fun with all four!”

Detailed Book Description

Inventor. Scientist. Diplomat. Printer. Benjamin Franklin was a very curious person, which led to lots of different roles during his lifetime.

In The Science and Technology of Ben Franklin, readers ages 9 through 12 explore the life of one of Colonial America’s most fascinating citizens. They discover what it might have been like to be a young person during the eighteenth century, when work and entertainment looked much different from today. Kids confront the same questions Franklin asked and follow him on a curiosity journey that lasted his entire life as a scientific pioneer in Colonial America. Through hands-on STEM activities, essential questions, text-to-world connections, and links to online resources, kids zoom in for a closer look into Ben Franklin’s world.

Try these hands-on engineering projects!

  • Design an unbreakable package
  • Test different types of insulating material
  • Build a prototype of a new kind of lamp
  • Make and test a Leyden jar


Available In:
Hardcover, $22.95
Paperback, $17.95
Includes: Table of Contents | Timeline | Charts | Glossary | Resources | Index | Metric Conversions Chart
Specs: 8 x 10 size | 4-color interior | 128 pages
Subject: Science
Content Focus: Engineering & Technology



Meet Benjamin Franklin

Chapter 1
The Science of Spare Time

Chapter 2
Heat & Light

Chapter 3
Zap: It’s Electric!

Chapter 4
Home is Where Design Happens

Chapter 5
Mailings & Maps

Chapter 6

Metric Conversions
Selected Bibliography
Essential Questions