[Week 1 Activity] Childhood objects


Some of my most memorable objects as a child were related to sound.

I remember being very fascinated with records and how they could produce sound. My parent’s record collection was not to be touched, but this kid’s set was mine and amazing. I can still feel the grooves when I think about it. The idea that these plastic discs could make music was beyond me. I actually took a pretty good hit by this machine when my brother threw it down the stairs and cracked my head open.

See Hear Read

Movin up in record quality, I used to love the DIsney read and listen books. Especially the Robin Hood one. Heavy rotation. I can remember the slots in the back and the hard back feeling. Books that come with a record. I love this now as much as then. I loved the chime on the records that told me when to turn the page.

I definitely knew when to turn the page.

Speakin and Spellin

I loved the digital sounds of the Speak & Spell. I used this a lot at the lake and so now there is a strong connection between that somewhat creepy computer voice and amazing memories of nature. I like this top handle design a lot as well. The orange color. There is something about this toy that looks and sounds perfect to me.

More recently I found out that people were circuit bending these and I have had that idea on teh backburner since then.

Still love that voice.

Talking Teddy

The peak toy technology might have been my Teddy Ruxpin doll. Those eyes and mouth were very high tech at the time and I still remember the stories about the airship


All of these objects are perhaps responsible for my love of books, storytelling, radio, and especially audiobooks and podcasts.Very affective objects.

1 Like

Tuve muchos objetos/juguetes que recuerdo con nostalgia. Pero uno de los más importantes fue mi primera lupa. Creo que hasta dormía con ella! jajaja


The object that meaned so much to my development and influenced me on my carreer was a typewriter. I loved writing on it.!

1 Like

Books! They are definitely what shaped my childhood. The places I could go, the people I would meet. It stil is my favorite activity :).


I enjoyed playing with modelling clay. I remember it by the name of Plasticine. Even all these years later I still have a box of it.

It is interesting to read about what other people remember.


I loved my spirograph!!!


For me two objects came to mind, books and my Lite Brite. I have always loved books and surrounded myself with books of all kids. I love collecting certain authors or subjects. I love the hunt of going to different stores and finding the one book I still need. As a child reading was my escape, we moved often and so books were often my friends and my place to be when I was the new kid. But I also remember my Lite Brite. I loved creating the different pictures or even making up my own.
lite brite|257x196


My childhood object was my rollerblades that I received for christmas. That was really important for me and untill now I like practice it. :slight_smile:

1 Like

I have always been obsessed with small simple things. When I was a kid, I remember dropping tons of quarters into the $.25 gumball toy machines in search of the perfect toy. One toy in particular was a mini (as in no longer than 3/4” inch in length) comb that would fold out and had like 5 comb teeth and a tiny mirror that was just a small piece of foil pasted on to the plastic. I didn’t use it as a comb; it was more of a laser blaster and mirror teleporter to other dimensions in my fantasy play. I was devastated the day I lost it at school (I stored it in my sock thinking it was secure there).

Nevertheless, I’ve always liked small things. The simplicity of design transcends into my life now and I am always on the look out for small simple things that enhance my life. Pictured, are a couple things I carry with me now. Begleri beads (for spinning and doing tricks), and a micro car (I also had a treasured micro car that I won in 3rd grade from the grab bag that I would play with and use my grandmother’s JCPenny’s catalogs to build structures to drive it on). Something about small, pocketable things that I can either use or just look at and enjoy aesthetically makes me happy.

Play is a big part of my life, career and personal, and I like to share the joys found in simple small things with others.

Thanks for reading! :slight_smile:


moon rocks

Moon Rocks - I think were available in the 1960’s and this science experiment kit was to grow crystals- which were called Moon Rocks.

The special thing about the MOON Rocks, was the process of experimenting with solutions that you never heard about- so it was very exciting to explore a hands on science experiment especially as a very young child. My sister and I waited days for the crystals to grow and it was thrilling to watch the solution turn into a solidified type of “moon rock” in a week or so. It did seem like forever but nonetheless, I was a budding woman in science before I even knew it.

The excitement was in the doing and learning…from this young age, I learned about chemical solutions and growing crystals and the excitement of discovery - all while gaining new knowledge and then this lead me to more experimenting and growing salt crystals later on.

One anecdotal note: my younger sister drank the solution and we then learned about potential dangers and risks of working with potentially poisonous solutions. - Sister was fine- we think she actually drank a glass of plain water and not the Moon Rock solution.


Hello @aglambert,

Thank you for your comment. It feels nice to find someone who shares a memory. After reading “Gears of my childhood” I realized that having a whole backyard and a tree as a reference for my “gears” was not that bad. There was lots of energy, creativiy and passion in that tree-climbing!

All the best to you in the course and in your passions!


Before Lego had come to Mexico I got TENTE,

At the beginning I follow instructions to assembly planes or whatever the box says, but then, I got a lot of possibilities to imagine and create. This toy changed the way I thought open a door to reflexion and analyzing my current job decisions



Thank you, Molly.

Happy to meet fellow free players :slight_smile:

1 Like

Comics, I used to carry a lot of them inside a plastic bag wherever I went, I read the same comic several times and then I used to create my own stories. I still love reading, I really believe that my love of comics has to do with that.


When I was a child I loved make cardboard or plastic models. I had to read and understand instruction. Many times I had to creative solve problems how to replace thinks like glue, paints etc. which we didn’t have in Poland in 80’s. :slight_smile:

1 Like

That looks great! I’ve never these before.


Each time I read Papert’s essay about the gears of his childhood, I feel a little remorse for some of the more episodic moments I had growing up. Though that remorse fades as I realize that all is not lost and consider my “gears” more as seeds for later realization. When I was 9 or 10 years old, I remember waiting for the delivery truck. Everyday. For two weeks. It was such an eternity for me. I was awaiting an RC car kit. One I had saved for with money I had earned. The Grasshopper had a 380 motor, shocks, big sandpaddle studded rear tires, an ABS resin chassis and a 2-channel radio with 1 servo. Upon arrival, I tore through the box and sorted out the pieces. I remember reading through the directions taking it all in. Wondering if I could complete the kit. Several days later I finished putting the Grasshopper together and drove it in the driveway until the battery died down. I raced my friend, who had a similar car, and as all boys do, crashed the car numerous times. I often went “under the hood” to tweak a screw here and there. I even tested the servos to be certain they were calibrated even though there wasn’t anything really wrong with them. I loved peering in on the moving parts, unhooking and reattaching wires, and testing how the shocks worked. I was so amazed that one could control a machine remotely from several hundred yards away. Despite having this early interest, and having a mechanical engineer for a father, the tinkering and kit building faded. While I didn’t go into engineering or other related field, the experiences I had with putting the car kit together, along with having a space to do so, we had a great basement with plenty of tools and workbenches, was the dormant seed for my current interest in tinkering and making for learning.I want the children I work with, including my own child, to have a variety of these “gears” experiences. I don’t mean that it must involve actual gears as Papert’s and, at least partially, mine did. I want children to experience Papert’s powerful idea around constructionist learning. My goal is to create an environment in my school where children can tinker and make using not only digital technologies that have garnered so much attention, but ones that bridge the physical world with the digital and vice versa. 51hz2z2VaqL

1 Like

One of the influences that has impacted my from my childhood was small crafts. My Mom was a “Family Studies” teacher and she would always be teaching me and my sister different craft activities before we went on a summer road trip. We started with the plastic string (aka “Scooby Doo”; “Gymp”) bracelets. I loved the patterning, both with colours and with stitch-style. It was a big fad at the after school programs that I attended too. After that, we learnt some basic beading and how to make bracelets again through bead colour patterns and stitch variation. We moved up to macrame bracelets and I never really got as good at that cause there was not the same interest, but I knew that more (than what I wa doing) was possible. As a young adult, I went on a road trip and learnt to knit. Now as an adult, I love this relaxing and fun craft. I like the stitch and colour variations that are possible to create different creations. I can make-up my own patterns and I can watch youtube to get all of the support I need in the world!

I think the creative, patient, and quiet repetition of crafting really impacted me. I love creating and making things and I think it has strongly impacted my visualization and creative confidence.


Horse obsessed child here as well. We moved a lot and I spent my entire childhood drawing them… well into high school.