As parents, we share the same concerns about the uncertainty surrounding coronavirus, and the impact it will have on our families. Here at KiwiCo, we asked our team to work from home. Many of us have children who will be home with us for the foreseeable future due to school closures.
We know a lot of you are also trying to find a new normal, including keeping your kids busy at home. So today, we’re launching a resource hub for parents to help support learning at home, with loads of stay-at-home educational activities for every age, tips from teachers on effective remote learning, and kid-friendly content that connects science with their daily lives. To start with, we’re bringing you an explanation of the science of handwashing, to help kids understand why it’s so important. We’re going to be adding new content and resources to the hub regularly. We’ll also be switching up our newsletter to bring you helpful resources more frequently, and you can follow us on Instagram for daily updates.
Please take care of yourself, and reach out if we can help. We’re here to support you and your family during this time. We’re in this together.
Try out this two-part water experiment! First–why can’t you blow up a balloon in a bottle? And, second–what happens when you do…and then fill it with water? Play with water pressure and create a water volcano that is seriously fun!
Use the power of chemical reactions to launch Pop-Top Rockets! These mini rockets are so easy to make and so fun to set off, you’ll want to launch them again and again. Explore Rocket Science on Day 5 of Tinker Camp. Or if you want to experience more fun in the sun, we recommend our Fun with Flight crate.
Discover the wonderful world of birds on day 3 of Koala Camp! Explore what makes these feathery friends so unique, create egg-inspired art, and craft a pair of toy binoculars to take with you on nature walks.
Use science to build a better sandcastle! Surface tension is what gives wet sand its strength for great sandcastle building. Too little water, and surface tension can’t hold the sand grains together. Too much water, and your sand collapses! Learn the science behind building a perfect construction.
Bring the beach to your backyard and use science to make sand slime! All you need is some clear glue and starch to transform simple sand into slime-like consistency! You’ll learn about polymer science in the process!
Watch a marshmallow grow to three times its original size with a quick and easy experiment using everyone’s favorite summer treat! The marshmallow grows when it burns because of chemistry happening deep within it. Marshmallows are made almost entirely out of sugar, and when sugar burns, one of the chemical compounds it makes is water vapor (like the hot steam from a kettle!). The water vapor is what makes the marshmallow grow.
We invite you and your kids to join us for a fun-filled enriching summer time experience filled with discovery and delight! Camp KiwiCo offers four different sessions – Koala Camp, Kiwi Camp, Atlas Camp, and Tinker Camp – geared for a different age group. Each session is made up of five days that are jam-packed with free content. Each day of camp comes with a science theme that is explored through videos, printables, experiments, hands-on projects, and creative challenges. Camp KiwiCo is designed so that you can choose your own adventure and timeline. You can follow the schedule we created and do all five days back-to-back or you can spread the fun throughout the summer!
We agree with you, Hugo! Bubbles are the best. In fact, at KiwiCo, we love bubbles so much we created a Bubble Machine that you can build with your kids at home! We think bubbles are awesome because they’re a super fun way to play with science.
A bubble is a pocket of gas (like air) that is trapped in a layer of liquid. To make a good bubble the outer shell needs to be able to stretch without breaking. And the secret ingredient for stretchiness is soap! Adding soap to water stops the water from sticking together so tightly. Soap has a love-hate relationship with water–literally. One end of a soap molecule loves water and the other hates water. The soap molecules in a bubble want to have their water-hating ends far away from the water, and the water-loving sides close to it. This creates a soap-and-water sandwich, with the soap on the outside and the water on the inside. With just a little soap and water, you can create bubbles anywhere!
Make stronger bubbles by adding corn syrup to your solution! Experiment with surface tension and see how bubbles stretch! Try dipping a coin or a paperclip into some soapy water, and see what happens when you drop it through a bubble!
Use electricity to break the water molecules apart into its parts — hydrogen and oxygen! The bubbles you see on the tips of the pencils are the hydrogen and oxygen gas created by this reaction. In fact, hydrogen gas is created at one of the pencils, and oxygen gas is created at the other. This process is called water electrolysis.
Oil and water famously don’t mix well. No matter how much you stir them together, they’ll always separate as oil rises to the top. But oil and water don’t avoid mixing because they don’t like each other; it’s because of their chemistry! In this project, you’ll learn more about the chemistry of oil and water and create a bubbly chemical reaction —both essential to making your Bubble Lamp bag groovy and fun.
When we interviewed kids to find out what they dreamed of becoming when they grew up, being an astronaut was high on nearly everyone’s list. (Honestly, a lot of us want to be astronauts too!) To help give kids a jumpstart on this dream we created the Astronaut Starter Kit (part of our new Professions series in the KiwiCo Store, which also include a Vet Starter Kit,for all the animal lovers out there.) The Astronaut Starter Kit is complete with hands-on projects and fun facts designed to spark wonder and “whoa, awesome!” reactions.
Did you know that astronauts orbiting the Earth can see the sun rise every 45 minutes? Or that because there is no wind or water on the moon, the footprints astronauts left there will last for millions of years? These are just a few of the out-of-this world facts your child will find in theAstronaut’s Guide included in the kit!
Becoming an astronaut requires a love of learning and commitment to curiosity. With KiwiCo’s Astronaut Starter Kit, your child can start their journey to the stars without leaving your home!
Have we mentioned we love space?! If your kids want more out of this world activities, make sure to check out all the cool space content at Camp KiwiCo!
We want every child who opens a KiwiCo crate to light up with excitement for the new adventures and activities ahead. That’s why each of our products undergoes a unique design journey and are tested by kid experts before they’re delivered to your door. We know we’ve created something really exciting when we hear the words, “whoa, awesome!” echo across our office. This reaction has become a litmus test for everything we do, and it’s our goal to spark the same excitement in your home. The KiwiCo community plays a huge role in the success of our products, so we want to give you an inside look at how each crate is designed to deliver “whoa, awesome!” moments.
Brainstorming: Searching for Eureka!
Eureka is not only the name of one of our crate lines (you can check it out here), but it’s also the phrase that really sums up the first goal in our design process. Before we start building, our product designers meet to come up with concepts during the brainstorming phase. They play with ideas until they have a eureka moment (aka the triumph of discovery). But not every “good idea” goes beyond the brainstorming phase. In order for it to be built, an idea has to inspire awe in a way that is uniquely KiwiCo.
When brainstorming ideas for a biology-focused product, the designers dove into the nostalgia of frog dissection. This is an educational milestone that is both incredibly enriching… and gross (and stinky! Will you ever forget the smell of formaldehyde??) In a very creative eureka moment, one of the product designers pitched the idea to reimagine this interactive learning experience by making it more approachable (i.e. “cuter”). And thus, Froggie Lab Dissection was born!
Prototyping: Trying & Trying Again
Our product designers are experts when it comes to learning from failure especially during the prototyping phase. This is when the product designers build the products. Most of the time, original concepts don’t look or work as planned. And that’s a good thing because, oftentimes, the small changes product designers make along the way lead to big innovation!
Froggie went through a lot of iterations before it evolved into a dissectable plush. The product designer originally thought to make the frog flat, but after a few attempts, she amped up the fluff! Different materials and colors were also tested for the organs to make sure they were anatomically correct but also cute!
Testing: Making “Whoa, Awesome!” Moments
Kids are at the core of our testing phase. We invite kids of all ages to test out all our products before they launch. Kids make great product testers because, as parents know all too well, they are always brutally honest. Our tiny testers tell us what they think of a product at a few different stages. They help the product designers decide what materials to use and how best to approach the building part of the crate projects. They share feedback with the KiwiCo Editorial and Graphic Design Teams which create exciting and enriching content to pair with products! Once all the crate elements are combined, we do a final kid test, and that’s when the “whoa, awesome!” moments are made!
Our kid testers helped us understand how to make Froggie more huggable by using softer materials. We also switched from velcro to buttons to unveil and close its belly. To make the crate a more enriching learning experience, the editorial team helped come up with a game to explain the anatomy of a frog!
We’d love to see your kids’ “whoa, awesome!” moments! Share photos and videos on Instagram and tag us at @kiwico_inc. Don’t forget to include #kiwico!
From radical robots to astounding animation and colorful chemistry, the wonder of science is all around us!
At KiwiCo, we want to inspire kids to find “whoa, awesome!” moments in their everyday lives. We collected activities, videos, and KiwiCo crates that help make popular science subjects more relatable and exciting for your kids!
Fun with Flight
There’s a lot to learn about massive metal machines that seemingly fly through the air with ease. Help your kids understand the foundations of flight with these awesome videos, projects, and activities!
Build and launch a pair of model orbiter spaceships using the power of pumps. Paint a set of model planets, then construct a miniature solar system that really spins. Explore the ins-and-outs of space travel — from the history of space exploration, to the challenges of astronaut training, to amazing facts about life on the International Space Station!
Stop motion animation is animation that is captured one frame at time, with objects that are moved between frames. When you play back the sequence of images rapidly, it creates the illusion of movement. Learn how to use this technique to make a fun stop action movie!
On day four of Koala Camp, your little one will learn the ins and out of scientific method and why measuring is good science. Then together you can try some hands-on experiments with ingredients from home.
Experience science that’s out of this world! Discover what stars are made of, explore the brilliant stories behind constellations, and learn how to find the North Star on day five of Tinker Camp during Camp KiwiCo!
Give your body (and your brain!) a workout with the science of sports! On day 5 of Kiwi Camp during Camp KiwiCo, kids will learn how muscles help them move and build a model arm (complete with rubber-band muscles)!
Build a disk launcher and explore physics by sending disks zooming across the room! After you make your flying toys, design your own game pieces using different clay techniques, and play and create games using your disk launcher!
We’re surrounded by waves! Sound and light travel as waves to our ears and eyes. Ocean waves crash onto the beach. Radio waves broadcast music to our cars. We even use waves to cook our food – in microwaves! Try making this wave machine to see how all different kinds of waves move!
We’d love to see your kids’ “woah, awesome!” moments! Share photos and videos on Instagram and tag us at @kiwico_inc. Don’t forget to include #kiwico!
You may have seen the phrase “Whoa, awesome!” in our emails or on the KiwiCo website, and that’s because “Whoa, awesome!” is at the heart of everything we do!
At KiwiCo, we know we’re on the right track when we hear the words “Whoa, awesome!” shouted from the product testing room in our Northern California office—usually followed by the sound of scurrying little feet as kid testers run to check out the excitement. The wide-eyed magic of “Whoa, awesome!” is essential to the KiwiCo story, so we wanted to share its meaning with you.
“It’s that moment—when the robot walks, the rocket launches, the heart beats in the stethoscope. It’s the wonder in each crate that inspires a lifetime of curiosity.” —Sandra Oh Lin, KiwiCo Founder & CEO
Kids are pint-sized philosophers. They’re constantly searching for answers to questions that might stump even the brightest of minds: “Why is the sky blue?”; “Can I think myself happy?”; “Why do humans have foreheads?”. (Scientists are still searching for the answer to that last one.) Every child is born with a sense of wonder, but inspiration is required to ignite curiosity, comprehension, and finally, wisdom and knowledge.
We believe that small creative experiences today help prepare kids to face bigger challenges in the future and that those special “Whoa, awesome!” moments can inspire them to better understand the world around them. As the ancient Greek philosopher Socrates said, “Wonder is the beginning of wisdom.” We couldn’t agree more—and that’s exactly why all the products we create at KiwiCo are designed with wonder in mind.
A window garden can blossom into discoveries about how plants grow.
We deliver a dose of “Whoa, awesome!” with every crate we ship in the hope of providing the next generation of innovators with the skills and confidence to become creative problem-solvers. And since KiwiCo grows with your child, we can continue to help build their sense of wonder into a lifetime of curiosity.
We’d love to see your kids’ “Whoa, awesome!” moments! Share photos and videos on Instagram and tag us at @kiwico_inc. Don’t forget to include #kiwico!
This summer is all about sparking a sense of wonder and adventure at home!
‘Tis the season for active imaginations and adventure! Just because this summer is shaping up to be a little different doesn’t mean you can’t create ‘whoa, awesome’ moments for your family. At KiwiCo, we believe that these small moments of wonder unlock lifelong curiosity and learning. And that’s why we’re always searching for activities that inspire both excitement and innovation!
To keep your kids saying, “whoa, awesome!” all summer long, we recommend making a bucket list! We collected some of our favorite activities, adventures, and DIYs for kids of all ages to help you get started. Take a look at these activities and create your family’s 2020 Summer Bucket List.
At-Home Adventures & Experiments
Take your family on an imagination vacation with these creative activities and adventures!
When it is too hot to go outside or you want to escape for a little while to an alternate reality – a good book can deliver on all those things. Great reading requires great books! This Summer Reading List compiled by the editors at KiwiCo includes great books for all ages. Our editors review hundreds of books to which we send as part of our Deluxe subscription. (PSA: you can upgrade your subscription – for any line except Maker and Eureka – and get a book delivered every month selected to complement that month’s crate theme!).
Join us at Camp KiwiCo!
We invite you and your kids to join us for a fun-filled enriching summertime experience filled with discovery and delight! Camp KiwiCo offers four different sessions – Koala Camp, Kiwi Camp, Atlas Camp, and Tinker Camp – geared for different age groups. Each session is made up of five days that are jam-packed with free content. Each day of camp comes with a science theme that is explored through videos, printables, experiments, hands-on projects, and creative challenges. Camp KiwiCo is designed so that you can choose your own adventure and timeline. You can follow the schedule we created and do all five days back-to-back or you can spread the fun throughout the summer!
For more ideas for your Whoa Awesome summer or to subscribe to our crates, visit us at KiwiCo.com.
As we know, summer is shaping up to be quite a bit different than we all imagined. When the team at KiwiCo realized that many of the summer plans we had made to fill our kids’ days were cancelled, the team rallied to put together an in-depth at-home summer camp–filled with awesome activities and projects to spark innovation, creativity, and joy.
Welcome to Camp KiwiCo! We invite you and your kids to join us for a fun-filled enriching summer time experience filled with discovery and delight! Camp KiwiCooffers four different sessions – Koala Camp, Kiwi Camp, Atlas Camp, andTinker Camp– geared for a different age group. Each session is made up of five days that are jam-packed with free content. Each day of camp comes with a science theme that is explored through videos, printables, experiments, hands-on projects, and creative challenges. Camp KiwiCo is designed so that you can choose your own adventure and timeline. You can follow the schedule we created and do all five days back-to-back or you can spread the fun throughout the summer!
When you think of an arcade, your first thought is probably of a room with glowing video game screens. But arcades didn’t start out as high-tech amusements. There’s an amazing amount of inventiveness and fun you can create…no computers or even electricity required.
Try your hand at building these DIY arcade games from materials around your house!
Based on the classic arcade game Whac-A-Mole, this Whack-A-Groundhog game involves quickly and repeatedly hitting the heads of groundhogs with a mallet as they pop up from holes. The quarters serve as weights to keep your groundhogs popping up even after you whack ‘em down!
Celebrate July 4th with these awesome summer crafts and activities for the whole family. Brighten your home with red, white, and blue stars and stripes! Create your own games to play outdoors! Get ready to have some serious fun!