[Activity 1] Childhood Objects


Welcome (or welcome back) to our first activity!

This week we invite you to share a childhood object with the community.

Read Seymour Papert’s essay on Gears of My Childhood and think about an object from your childhood that interested and influenced you.

What was special about it? How did it affect the way you think and learn?

Reply to this post to share a photo and short description of your childhood object.

If you want to try a different way of sharing and interacting, we suggest you to post your object in this experimental Google Slides deck (instructions on how to use it are inside).

If you have already done this activity in the past, you could pick a different object from your childhood, or reflect more on the same object you shared in the last round of LCL. It would be nice to see how your thoughts are evolving through different LCL iterations!

We look forward to read about your childhood objects!

LCL Team

A previous version of this activity is also available in Italiano (Italian), 日本語 (Japanese), Português (Portuguese), Español (Spanish)

[Week 1 Activity] Childhood objects
Getting started with round 2 (winter edition) of LCL!
[Week 1 Activity] Childhood objects
Reflecting on Childhood Objects
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When I was a child in the seventies my Dad bought me a magnetic robot. I was fascinated with the magnetic joints because I could pull different parts apart and rearrange the robot.


Based off of information provided by my mom, I was reportedly very attached to a Fischer Price tape recorder. I would listen to kids cassettes over and over, record myself singing the songs, and then play back my creations repeatedly. When I think back myself, I remember loving the colouring books that revealed colour when water was added to different areas with a brush. I suppose both of these things could have contributed to my love of learning through doing and for arts-based projects (although I cannot sing, and apparently never was very good either).


I remember a game that fascinated me when I was little, His name was “Simon” and had keys that emitted sounds to be repeated in sequence. It helped me a lot in concentration and visual memory. A nice to remember. !immagine


I remember my imagination running wild when my Dad bought me a cassette player for my room that had shortwave radio stations. This was around 1985. I was 9 years old and we had just moved from a remote regional town in Australia to the suburbs of a city (Adelaide).

When I couldn’t sleep, I would scroll through the stations and listen to the blips and beeps (my Dad told me they were secret satellites) and sometimes you could pick up some really strange sounds. I would write down and pretend to decode their secret messages of blips and beeps. It was like being connected to the entire world and even somehow, the entire universe. I felt like I was intercepting coded messages. In a strange way this was the catalyst for my love of astronomy and curiosity about the universe and my early career as a programmer.

I could tune into foreign language stations and I would listen to Big Ben chiming at midnight (my time in Adelaide) on the BBC World Service and the world felt somehow connected to my room through the little blue box.

I dreamed one day get to travel out of South Australia and see the world. In my 20s, and I finally did that, and left with a one-way ticket to London to explore and work overseas.


Barbie gets a bad rap these days, with critics claiming she sets unrealistic standards in beauty for young girls. While that might be true (after all, her feet were designed to only wear high heels!), I saw her differently as a child.

To me, dolls and plush toys were a blank slate. They were tools for storytelling, an opportunity to develop elaborate plots that showcased Barbie and friends in a variety of careers and situations. As I got older, I learned to write fictional stories and eventually learned to tell non-fiction stories based in research and data.

Today, I’m a data analyst in advertising and my greatest strength is my ability to tell stories rather than crunch numbers. Without learning how to create stories from nothing but a few toys as a child, I wouldn’t be able to synthesize research the way I can today.


My mum enrolled me in a baton class when I was quite young. I remember nothing about that class, except the day we were being positioned into formations and told to do certain moves at certain times. I found out this meant we were going to twirl baton in front of people, and this filled me with so much dread that I quit baton class.

However, I never gave up my baton. A dimpled, shiny metal rod with white rubber knobs on each end, it followed me wherever I moved in my life. I took great joy in spinning and throwing it, taught only by my enthusiasm, curiosity, and trial and error which often resulted in a knock on the head. I was mesmerized by the feeling of finding its slightly off-center center, and playing with its balance. It gave me an intimate education in gravity, and the physics of things, and how to move my own body to allow its trajectory to continue.

It was joy that brought me to those understandings, not someone telling me how it worked, though I certainly needed a teacher to get me started. Later in life, it gave me a natural sensibility in my career as a puppeteer. I am able to anticipate the arc of a movement based on the feel, weight and speed of a thing. I have lightning reflexes, and an intense awareness of the relationship between my body and moving objects.

After writing this I’ve noticed regular daily actions that probably have their origins in baton twirling. When I put on my coat, I don’t swing the coat around me, but rather swing my body into the coat. A small thing, but I believe this has contributed a great deal to bringing a dancerly flow to my everyday physical existence that I am most grateful for.

(Stock image from the web. My baton is far more well loved with cracks and dents.)


In my childhood , i used to play a matching cards with my sister’s .That game helpful for me to improve my concentration level and memory power.It was also “an object to think with” .WMCZ_Protected_Areas_Card_Game-7_(cropped)


We had a bag of blocks, the blocks were like in the photo but the bag was blue. We also had a set of Lincoln Logs. I loved building things- random structures, homes, buildings, stables for animals, bridges, towers. I liked building structures and places. It was construction but also story if I used them to play with after building.


When I was about 5- or 6-years old my father bought me this drill–my first tool. I’ve had the notion to make my living with my hands ever since.


Great interesting.


This object was not the first that came to my mind, but it was definitely the one that brought more joy to my heart when I thought about it. It was a small pink tape recorder that my parents got me for Christmas, I used to spend hours locked in my room dancing, singing and creating choreographies for all my favorite songs. Now that I think about it I am not so sure how it contributed to my learning, but I can still feel a wave of freedom and happiness when I recall these moments of my childhood.


Harry Potter y la piedra filosofal fue mi regalo cuando cumplí 11 años :slight_smile: después tampoco pude parar.

pinned #16


My favorite childhood objects were dolls and my favorite past time was to bath them, dress them up, apply make over, etc…, I would name them and treat them as my friends, in fact they were my first friends. The special part is that they were been gifted to me by my parents and my maternal uncle, whom I love and adore a lot. My childhood object, now I feel has influenced my present career, because in my childhood days I would pretend to be a teacher and would arrange all the dolls as my students and I would scribble on the walls, take attendance, scold them as my kindergarten teacher did. Though I was working in a software field initially, now I feel I have chosen the right career as a teacher and I feel the real happiness and content in life when I begin my day with children. It always keeps you young and energised when you are around and amidst of children.


Hi, thank you for giving a chance to talk about my roommates.My childhood object was toys…I love collecting various types of barbie dolls,and the big fur teddy.I love to play with barbie doll all the time.I spend time with them.I used to take care of barbies like my sisters.I have named them as tinku,dolly,pinky. The barbie dolls are gifted my dad,and the teddy bear was gifted by mom,she made the big teddy for me and she presented me, And my teddy name was bubbly.I named him bubbly coz he will be so chubby with lots of fur.Even now I have teddy at room,he has a special chair.I used to talk with my teddy,he knows all my happiness and sorrows,only thing is he cant react it back.I, wont allow anybody to sit in that. Even thou i’m grown up,whenever I see toys,I feel like a little kid.And my room looks colorful with these toys(friends)2103654-barbie-spa-fab-doll-age


One object which i often played in my childhood days was the PEG SOLITAIRE game. It is an awesome board game to play alone or with friends. The aim of the game is to clear the board by jumping (vertical or horizontal) over the marbles with other marbles and leaving only one marble at the end.!
This board made my childhood days memorable, which has taught me the value of trial and error.


An object that was a part of my childhood for a very short time but made a deep imprint - a transistor radio we took apart with a friend of mine… it looked something like this inside:
(Wikimedia Commons / Aleksi Pihkanen)

I can still remember the smell of the components, how they felt, how much force we had to use to remove the components - a lot of sensory memories. I remember wondering what the components were, why they were there. It was much later when I learned what a capacitor is but I sure recognized it at that point. It was all play & peers: we didn’t really know what we were doing but damn it was fun!

I got so fascinated with tearing up electronic devices I only thought about getting my hands on a TV set for a while. I’m still a bit sad I couldn’t get any scrap electronics to play around with, after that. I can recollect the feeling of excitement and a bit of an obsession forming - so passion was definitely there.

The big take away, I hope, was that playing with that radio rewarded me for being curious. Opening stuff up is not necessarily healthy but it doesn’t (always) kill either. It’s fun. Sometimes you learn. If you don’t, it’s not so serious, you tried. It’s always worth it to try and see how stuff works.

I also could have chosen a book, or books in general - I was read to a lot and as soon as I learned to read, I never stopped. So books certainly changed the way I think and imagine, I’m sure.