Extraordinaires Design Studio is a kit that allows your creativity and ingenuity to flow as you invent the perfect object for your Extraordinaire! You receive 15 Extraordinaire cards, 30 Think! cards, 15 object cards, 5 award cards, and a pen and 50-sheet pad for drawing your designs. Everything comes in a sturdy plastic case that holds everything neatly inside, but also acts as your "studio" as you design . . . as you can see, everything has its place, and the drawing pad will sit neatly on top of the unused cards.
Elliott had to create a timekeeper for a Ninja. He created a chair with a built-in clock that would change time automatically based on time zones, and would allow the Ninja to rest between his jobs.
Extraordinaire Cards - Double-sided cards that include the Extraordinaire, their name and level, and on the back you'll find more illustrations to give you insight into the life of the Extraordinaire
Object Cards - This is what you're actually inventing. It might be something to sit on, a cooking utensil or something to wear, but it needs to be relevant to your Extraordinaire and their unique needs
Think! Cards - These cards are categorized by Research, Design and Improve, and have questions and suggestions for helping the inventor to think deeper about their invention. One example of a Design card is "Break it Apart: Explain how your design will operate. What does it look like on the inside?" These are great for the student who might need a little extra prompting to get their ideas flowing.
Award Cards - Best Single Feature, Most Useful, etc. Particularly useful for recognizing the creativity of each student and design, and allowing students to recognize the great things that their siblings/classmates/peers etc have invented
How to Play
There are playing instructions that guide you through the process. There are instructions for single player, multiple-player and Product Design Challenge. The Product Design Challenge is a more intense version of the single player version, allowing students to complete levels and unlock an Expert Pack online when they have logged their work.
Essentially, you will have an Extraordinaire and an object card. You study your Extraordinaire, and then decide what kind of object you will design that meets the criteria on your object card and the needs of your Extraordinaire. You can use some of the Think! cards to help you flesh out your ideas if necessary.
The instructions suggest ages 8+ but Emory (6) has also enjoyed it. He is my imaginative/creative child that can get carried away with his thoughts, as you'll see here. He was with his Robot here, designing a form of protection. He studied the card and decided his robot was a security robot that scans people for disguises. Since he worked security and it might be dangerous, Emory designed a Force Field. We wrote notes about it on his idea sheet too. Of course, there was a robot inside of it at one point, but he got a little detailed with the many specific sections of the force field and you couldn't see his robot by the end. I guess it did it's job!
The Extraordinaires Design Studio can be purchased alone, but it is also part of the Timberdoodle Fifth Grade Curriculum Kit. Outside of using it as part of "school," I think this would be a great rainy day activity or a fun addition to a boredom busters list. I love that this is more than just drawing a designated object. You're not following someone else's how-to to get to a cookie cutter finish. It's an exercise in allowing personal creativity to take over, which is why I think it's perfect for the child who likes to sketch new ideas, create, invent, and imagine.
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