Inventors and Inventions Theme Page
This "Theme Page" has links to two types of resources related to the study
of inventors and inventions. Students and teachers will find curricular resources
(information, content...) to help them learn about this topic. In addition,
there are also links to instructional materials (lesson plans) that will help
teachers provide instruction in this theme. Please read our
- 3M Collaborative Invention Unit
- A teaching unit on what it takes to become an inventor. Students learn about
four required roles (scout, wizard, critic, trailblazer) by reading information,
completing activities, and exploring other sites.
- Ancient Inventions
- Take a tour and find out the history of forty six ancient inventions, from Smith College History of Science, Mueum of Ancient Inventions.
- Canadian Inventions and Inventors
- This database of Famous Canadian Patents from "Learn and Discover"
Website by Industry Canada, describes some of our most famous inventions and
- Creativity, Innovation and Problem Solving
- Eleven guidelines to creativity, innovation, and problem solving with historical
examples of how these have been used.
of Leonardo da Vinci
- A detailed look at 39 of Leonardo da Vinci's drawings and inventions.
- A comprehensive Website on Leonardo da Vinci, which includes five lesson
plans for hands-on classroom activities. The four content sections provide
information on Leonardo's futuristic inventions, Renaissance techniques for
drawing perspective, a biography of the man, and his curious habit of writing
a New Kind of Pencil
- Some ideas for teaching a lesson on inventing a new kind of pencil. The
site has a link to a similar page on inventing a new kind of eraser also.
is Kids Stuff
- A unit plan from New Brunswick in which students in grades 4-8 use "things
that bug them" to brainstorm, create, and advertise inventions.
- This section of the GIRLTECH site has information for the person interested
in learning how to invent, descriptions of some kooky inventions, funny quotes
about inventions, stories about some female inventors, and a bibliography
of resources for kid inventors.
- This site is intended to promote a better understanding of the principles
of the invention and design process. Included are an innovative set of learning
modules that employ a "hands-on" approach (solar water heating, telephone,
environment, and library search strategies), links to other www resources,
and resources for teachers.
- A comprehensive site. The above link is to the home page but if you wish
access to two of the best resources, click the buttons below:
- Learn about nine inventions that were developed during the Renaissance:
Clocks, Gunpowder and Artillery, Eye Glasses and Spectacles, Printing Press,
Flush Toilet, Microscope, Telescope, Submarine, and the Match.
and Their Inventions
- A Website from Think Quest Junior. You can read articles, play a game,
search timelines for inventions, and even take a quiz. There are good links,
and if you have an idea, click on share inventions. Lots of fun for grades
4 to 6 level.
Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation
- From the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, the Lemelson
Center's "Centerpieces" provides virtual tours on such inventions as the electric
lightbulb, electric guitar, whole cloth, and quartz watch. Their "Digging
Deeper" section has links to other Websites.
- In this teaching unit, intermediate students learn about sound, examine
simple musical instruments, and then are challenged to create their own unique
Inventors Hall of Fame
- Brief descriptions of inventors and their inventions that have been registered
at the U.S. Patent Office. As expected, most are American but other nationalities
are represented as well. Some descriptions have links to other related web
sites on the same inventor.
Science Teachers Association: All Awards, Grants and Competitions
- The NSTA sponsors a number of science competitions for U.S. students including:
The Toshiba ExploraVision award, which asks students what a form of technology
might be like 20 years in the future; The Craftsman/NSTA Young Inventors Awards
Program, where students are challenged to invent or modify a tool; and The
Duracell Competitions to design and build working devices powered by Duracell¨
batteries. The Toshiba contest is open to Canadian students as well.
- TrackStar is an online interface that allows instructors to create lessons
for students by sequencing existing instructional content in various Websites
within a lesson. Students explore one topic at a particular location within
one Website then move on to the next topic at another Website. The list of
topics remains visible throughout the lesson so that students can remain on
track. Explorations of the Websites beyond the designated instructional content
are also possible.
This link is to their search page from where a keyword search on "inventor"
or "invention" will produce numerous hits. Caution #1: Many of the Websites
that these lessons access may already be on this CLN page - it's the creation
of lesson objectives and the sequencing of the tours through the sites that
make the lesson potentially useful to your students. Caution #2: The quality
of the lessons (e.g., defining objectives, finding Websites, sequencing
the tours) will vary widely within the TrackStar collection.
Note: The sites listed above will serve as a source of curricular content
in Inventors and Inventions. For other resources in Science (e.g., curricular
content in Earth Science, General Science, Life Science, or Physical Science),
or for lesson plans and theme pages, click the "previous screen" button below.
Or, click here if you wish to
return directly to the CLN menu, which will give you access to educational resources
in all of our subjects.