Shiny New Inventions

Shiny New Inventions Lesson Plan

Inventions shape the way we live everyday. Create a shining, new invention that will benefit our daily activities!

  • 1.

    More than ever, we rely on technology in our everyday lives. Items such as dishwashers and personal computers are now a common part of our daily routines. Modern inventors like Steve Jobs of Apple and Bill Gates of Microsoft are well known and respected in society. We eagerly anticipate announcements when their companies unveil their next great creations!

  • 2.

    Ask students what gadgets and tools are important to their daily routines. What makes activities like homework and chores easier to complete? Discuss in a whole group and make a list together on the classroom white board using Crayola Dry Erase Markers. Organize text resources for students to view focused on important inventions and inventors. Require students to take notes on their reading experiences.

  • 3.

    Challenge students, working individually or in collaborative groups, to think like inventors. What activities, chores and responsibilities do you have that could be simplified with the invention of a new tool? Is it your job to walk the dog after school? Maybe you have to take out the trash once a week.

  • 4.

    Students create a new tool or gadget that would improve our daily lives. On a sheet of white paper students use Crayola Erasable Colored Pencils to draw an example of their inventions and how they work.

  • 5.

    If time permits, have students create a 3-D model of their inventions. Crayola Model Magic can assist with this step, and a variety of recycled materials will also be useful.

  • 6.

    In preparation for presentation of inventions, students name their new tool and write a short summary of the task or tasks the new invention does. Included in the summary should also be a statement regarding how use of this invention betters our lives.

  • 7.

    Present inventions to the class. Students explain how they work and the benefits each will bring to our lives.


  • LA: Read and comprehend informational texts, including history/social studies, science, and technical texts, at the high end of the grade level text complexity band independently and proficiently.
  • LA: Integrate information presented in different media or formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively) as well as in words to develop a coherent understanding of a topic or issue.
  • LA: Conduct short research projects to answer a question, drawing on several sources and refocusing the inquiry when appropriate.
  • LA: Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
  • LA: Present claims and findings, sequencing ideas logically and using pertinent descriptions, facts, and details to accentuate main ideas or themes; use appropriate eye contact, adequate volume, and clear pronunciation.
  • SCI: Define the criteria and constraints of a design problem with sufficient precision to ensure a successful solution, taking into account relevant scientific principles and potential impacts on people and the natural environment that may limit possible solutions.
  • VA: Intentionally take advantage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and processes to enhance communication of experiences and ideas.
  • VA: Select and use the qualities of structures and functions of art to improve communication of ideas.


  • Possible classroom resources include: Time For Kids: Thomas Edison: A Brilliant Inventor (Time for Kids Biographies) by Editors of TIME for Kids; Time For Kids: Benjamin Franklin: A Man of Many Talents (Time for Kids Biographies) by Editors of TIME for Kids; Steve Jobs & Steve Wozniak: Geek Heroes Who Put the Personal in Computers (Getting to Know the World's Greatest Inventors and Scientists) by Mike Venezia; Albert Einstein: Universal Genius (Getting to Know the World's Greatest Inventors and Scientists) by Mike Venezia; The Wright Brothers: Inventors Whose Ideas Really Took Flight (Getting to Know the World's Greatest Inventors and Scientists) by Mike Venezia
  • Working in small groups, students define a problem and develop a prototype for their solution using recycled materials such as newspapers, paper towel tubes, cardboard boxes, etc. Students prepare an organized presentation for classmates.
  • Students examine some familiar and unfamiliar gadgets in a small group setting. As a group, students determine how these items improved daily routines. Take notes on each gadget. Have the group think about how they might update these inventions for today's rapidly advancing technology.
  • Students, working individually or in collaborative groups, design and videotape a commercial for their invention.