Friday, October 03, 2014

Home Made Play # 3: Ice creatm stick catapults

One of Muffin's favourite games that he keeps going back to is Angry Birds Jenga where there are birds, catapults and blocks. He has an even greater love for it now because he has a few Star Wars Angry Birds pieces. It is one game that he can be left playing all by himself for hours.

The only problem is that he would willingly forgo playground time just to continue building  and destroying structures. And because we generally like that the kids are out of the house, out in the open, we don't like it when he opts for the indoor choice.

Then I found something that could be made with ice cream sticks, rubber bands and a bottle cap. Very imaginatively, it was called the Ice Cream Stick Catapult. But it was a great discovery because it pretty much took as long to make as it took the glue to dry under the bottle cap. And instead of launching birds, Muffin could bring down his catapult and launch beans. We used black beans and green beans. Black beans being a better choice. (We'll explain that later)

We didn't use a bottle cap because Muffin was too impatient and it was almost time for him to get to school. That meant improvising with a plastic spoon.

Did it hold his attention as long as the Angry Birds set did? We don't really know because his school bus came before he tired of it. He didn't let me bring it home though. He insisted that it had to be brought to school for show and tell. And it hasn't come back since. I suspect it's taken up residence in his classroom and I'm pretty sure it's being used to launch balled up paper, erasers and goodness knows what else the little ones can get their hands on. 

It's just occurred to me, while writing the last line that should Evan bring said catapult to school, it would likely be a bigger hit.  But it would almost certainly guarantee me an irate phone call from his teacher about how I had put a weapon into my son's hands and his entire class had taken cue from him and were launching all sorts of things at each other and teachers. 7 year olds are much more creative in their destruction and play. It would have pretty much guaranteed a full scale class war.

Thankfully, Evan hasn't seen it yet though I have plans to make one for each one of them. Then we can have a challenge to see who is able to launch the beans the furthest and we could be single-handedly responsible for an entire patch of bean sprouts growing in the grass patches.

Incidentally, we don't encourage the use of green beans especially if said child using it is young or lacks coordination. Muffin ended up looking over the catapult as he launched the beans. It meant beans flying straight into his nose and giving me a bit of a panic attack. Thankfully, he had a runny nose and we managed to blow out the beans together with his snot.

But even that, he found very amusing and declared the black beans the ones to use because 'my nose holes are not so big as the black beans.'

Spot on observation, my young baked good.


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