Back in January I had a good look around the K’nex stand and was immediately impressed with the new Mighty Makers range. Getting girls into engineering is something that a lot of companies are looking to promote and this range makes the K’nex product more appealing to a certain type of girl. Now I am not for a second saying they won’t appeal to boys either but Elizabeth has never been interested in K’nex until I showed her this range so I am all for equality and stuff but make it pink and purple and Elizabeth will actually take an interest in it. You might not like this type of marketing but for my daughter this is exactly what she needs.
We finally got our hands on a few of the set this month when K’nex sent us the Inventor’s Clubhouse and Up, Up and Away sets.
As we have never built K’nex before so we decided to start with the smaller of the two sets. The Up, Up and Away set is for children aged 7 plus which is perfect for Elizabeth who turned 7 in June. She did require help with the model but the further into the build she went the easier it was for her to follow the instructions.
The thing that we loved about this set was the working propeller and the added decorations of the stars. The model was not overly complicated and yet looks great. The pieces clicked together easily and made a really sturdy model.
The Up, Up and Away set can also be used to make a butterfly and a flying contraption. Additional instructions can be downloaded from the K’nex website which helps to make the set go further.
After we conquered flying we decided to get started on the inventors clubhouse so that the mighty makers had somewhere to do all of their inventing.
The parts for the Inventors Clubhouse can be used to make 10 different models (at different times, instructions available online) or used as shown on the box to make the clubhouse and a car. You can also make up your own builds with the 528 pieces.
Elizabeth wanted to build the car first to see how the motor worked. The motor required 2 AA batteries and has a switch for forward and backwards.
The Car was great to put together and seeing how the motor turned the wheels was really interesting for Elizabeth. We quickly moved on to putting the clubhouse together.
The clubhouse was a bit more complicated than the other bits we had put together as it had a variety of moving parts and pieces that fitted together at different angles. The hardest bit for Elizabeth was attaching the zip wire but once attached she really enjoyed playing with it.
The Clubhouse comes with a lift that is controlled with a winch which helped to show Elizabeth how these work.
The clubhouse also comes with a tire swing, a twisty staircase and the zip wire.
The main area of the clubhouse came with a laptop, microscope and a mini car model as well as a table and two chairs.
The Might Makers K’Nex sets are easy to put together and yet they show complex engineering concepts to the children who are building them. The colours make them appealing to children of both genders and Elizabeth really enjoyed building the sets with me. At seven years old she did require help when building these sets but once she had seen some parts clipped together she was able to continue by herself. The more she builds with K’nex the easier this would become.
She is very interested in the rest of the Mighty Makers range and Alison has shown interest in some of the other K’Nex sets so this is definitely something we will look into in the future.