|Click on the picture to see this great Tedtalk|
I really love this Tedtalk by AnnMarie Thomas. Even though she is suggesting this for teachers and students, she field tested it with her daughter. It is great to teach about electrical circuits, resistance, and load, but the best thing about this activity is that her daughter was able to learn things by trying them out.
"Let's see what would happen if I try this."
This is learning at its best. The learner is able to pose a theory and try it. If it doesn't work, the learner tries something new. If it does work, the adult, or parent, (or Google,) is there to explain why. This is much more engaging than teaching the rules about circuits, first, and then supervising while the learner follows the rules. The more engaging the activity, the more time spent learning, and the better things are learned.
"Oops, I guess that doesn't work."
It is also a great way to learn from mistakes. A mistake is not remembered as evidence of lack of learning. Instead, a mistake is simply moved to the list of what doesn't work. The mistake represents learning instead of failure.
Go ahead and try it! Let your children teach you creative learning.