Hands-on learning is one of the best ways to anchor concepts in young minds. The Engino Mechanical Simple Machines set from Timberdoodle is helping my children understand basic physics while having lots of fun!
Homeschooling parents all have their favorite subjects. Nature study, history, and literature read alouds are my top picks, followed by art and music.
But then there is science. I know it’s important and we don’t neglect it, but it’s really not one that gets me excited. Maybe that’s because too often, the concepts stay on paper and don’t come alive.
So when a product comes along that teaches important science and physics concepts through hands-on learning that’s fun, I’m all for it!
That’s exactly what the Engino Mechanical Simple Machines set does. My children absolutely adore this set, and I love how much they are able to learn by using it. Let me show you more!
The Engino Mechanical Simple Machines set teaches children about the six major simple machines, as well as two other important structures. Levers, linkages, gears, wheels and axles, inclined planes, pulleys, cams and cranks, and screws are all covered.
The entire set contains over 300 sturdy pieces made of either plastic or rubber that link together to form all sorts of moving structures. A detailed graphic instructions booklet covers each simple machine, illustrating for the children how to build numerous structures that feature that particular simple machine.
Along with the eight graphic instructional booklets, there’s a larger informative book included for children to read and discover more about simple machines.
Timberdoodle (a great homeschool supply company!) sells this set as part of their 7th grade curriculum kit, but we found the set very suitable for my oldest two who are 11 and 9. While they’ve looked through the reading book included with the set, they’ve mostly focused their time and energies on building all of the incredible structures!
Over the past few years, our children have really gotten into Legos, and I do like how they encourage imaginative, hands-on play. They don’t require batteries, either, which is another thing going for them. I try to focus on those positives when we find the pieces on the floor through the entire house.
This Engino set is like taking Legos to a whole new level. Added bonus: the smallest pieces in the Engino set aren’t nearly as teeny tiny as the smallest Lego pieces.
In fact, since we’ve had this set, Legos have stayed on the shelf while Engino Simple Machines has been brought out!
Some of the structures require a bit of teamwork, too. Certain ones are a bit tricky to connect and are easier with another set of hands involved. I see this as a great bonus since it encourages positive interaction between siblings.
And because some structures aren’t a cinch to build, there can also be an element of frustration for my kiddos to work through. Again, I see this as a huge plus!
Life is full of challenges and difficult tasks. Our children need to know how to handle feelings of failure, struggle through them, and come out on the other side with the greater feeling of accomplishment! I’ve seen my son in particular really struggle with a particular structure, work through frustration while continuing to build, and then be thrilled with the final machine once he gets it.
Though this set really makes a great addition to our homeschool, it would be a great set for families who use public or private schools, too. It’s fun enough that our children like to use it in their free time, and I could definitely see other children feeling the same way.
Since my oldest two are the ones who are most able to use the set, I asked them to share their thoughts on it with you.
It is the most awesome building set ever!
-Miss L, age 11
The instructions are very good and easy to understand, and it’s so much fun!
-Mr. M, age 9
Our 6-year-old, Miss A, has joined in watching the older two build. I know she’ll love building herself as she gets older. Right now, Engino is a bit too complicated for her, but she likes seeing the finished products that her older siblings create.
If you can’t tell, we love our Engino Mechanical Simples Machines set! If you want to make basic physics come alive for your children, I highly recommend checking it out for your family.
Do you think your children would enjoy the Engino Simple Machines set?
I’m delighted to be a Timberdoodle review blogger this year! For this review, Timberdoodle supplied the Engino Mechanical Simple Machines set, but I was not compensated monetarily. All opinions are enthusiastically mine.