Mini Makers Fair Bristol

copper kettle fire

If there was an event that was made for our family, it was the Mini Makers Faire in Bristol today. Science, technology, crafting and a good dose of recycling thrown in. Even a little bit of history, but most importantly, there were buckets and buckets of creativity.

copper kettle tree

copper spoons as conductors

Each exhibit, we stopped at, strengthened the children’s knowledge in a fun and exciting way. In this outside exhibit, each copper spoon completed the electric circuit to send flames out of a different kettle. Nothing like a dramatic display to sear information into memory.

fruit keyboard

Inside the faire, the children were fascinated by the banana keyboard. While one tapped each of the bananas in turn to produce a different note, the children joined hands and held the orange to complete the electric circuit. The laptop screen showed them which note was being pressed. If only my school science lessons had been so much fun.

wooden automata frogs

The wooden automatas really captured their imaginations. The frogs took turns trying to catch the fly and I loved the flying ham to the left. (Wish I had taken a better photo). First time I’ve seen a tin can being used as a base for the mechanisms. Very neat.

The children are really keen to have a go making an automata or two.

flapping bird automata

There was so much there. We stopped to talk to the people with the wasp display and the archaeology finds from the nearby dig. There was a very effective display of vortex current using a dustbin. Among all the modern technology, there were spinners and weavers, and a lady crocheting yarn made from strips of crisp packets. It really was the most perfect event for us.

origami fox robots

These roborigami foxes were a hit. The children tell me that they responded when hands were put close to them. They also made an endearing, almost yapping sound.

origami fox robot

What’s not to like when someone can combine origami with electronics. Did I mention the 3-d printer and the toothbrush head that vibrated across the table?

All in all, the faire was inspiring and fun. I’m sure they’ll be talking about it for some time to come. Not a bad start to the Easter holidays. Oh, and we came home with a little science and crafting project. I think I know what we’ll be doing tomorrow.

14 thoughts on “Mini Makers Fair Bristol

  • Sunday 24 March, 2013 at 6:39 am

    What a wonderful outing for your family with so many interesting things to see and do.
    Anne xx

    • Sunday 24 March, 2013 at 12:17 pm

      There was so much more there, which is surprising as it wasn’t a huge area. Even had some of the old computers, like the ones I learnt to program on, up and working. Green writing on black screens and big floppy disks. Children were not quite so impressed!

  • Sunday 24 March, 2013 at 11:22 am

    Wow, I wonder if it is coming our way, thats what I call a fair worth going to.

    • Sunday 24 March, 2013 at 12:36 pm

      The concept originates from the US, where it is much bigger. This is the first one in Bristol. I hope they make it a regular event. We could have spent a lot more time there. There was something for everyone.

  • Sunday 24 March, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    oh how fun!!
    makes me wish we could just pop over to bristol and check it out!

    • Sunday 24 March, 2013 at 11:50 pm

      There are so many times I wish the same thing. Not Bristol, obviously, but some of the events further afield! If only!

  • Monday 25 March, 2013 at 5:21 pm

    Oh that looks fun! especially the foxes :0)

    • Monday 25 March, 2013 at 8:20 pm

      It was fun. We’ve been inspired and experimenting today. 🙂

  • Friday 29 March, 2013 at 7:58 pm

    Dear Cheryl
    Your photos and description are lovely! We’ve put a link to your blog from our site. If you fancy seeing your photos featured on our blog, drop us a line!

    • Monday 8 April, 2013 at 9:47 am

      We had so much fun. It has inspired the children enormously! I’ve dropped you an email.

  • Thursday 4 April, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    Crocheting with crisp packets. I’ve seen knitting with strips of carrier bags but that’s a new one on me! Sounds like a great day out.

    • Saturday 6 April, 2013 at 11:22 pm

      Hi Bridget. Lovely to see you back again. I’ve knitted with carrier bags, but never tried crisp packets. Harder to clean the crisp packets, I guess. They were colourful and pretty, so worth the effort for some.

  • Thursday 25 April, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    I’m glad you liked our robot origami foxes 🙂
    There are videos of them in their natural habitat (music festivals) on our website

    • Friday 26 April, 2013 at 10:22 am

      Thanks, Ad. I’ll check out that link. The foxes were a big hit!

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