Kiwi Crate is a kids’ craft and activity subscription that comes with everything you need to complete a great project or two, usually a pair of crafts that can be used as toys or playtime props. The box is geared for ages 5-8, and the projects are always age-appropriate, though some require more parental assistance than others.
This is a review of the KiwiCo Santa’s Sleigh Automaton!
They also offer a variety of single crates without a subscription, plus awesome holiday crafts. See all the Kiwi Crate holiday gift subscriptions and holiday shop items here!
It comes with a booklet that talks all about the project!
Through this crate, the kids will learn how to build an automaton of Santa’s sleigh and make it fly through the sky.
The booklet also cite some examples of real-life automaton such as the toy jack-in-a-box, a wind-up toy car, and a vending machine, connecting the fun holiday activity to real life science and engineering applications.
The booklet also lists all the materials you’ll be needing to complete the craft.
Santa’s Sleigh Automaton ($17.95) [SOLD OUT]
Help Santa and his reindeer soar through the night sky by engineering a hand-cranked automaton. Learn about cranks, cams, and rotary motion while designing a wintry nighttime scene.
The kit contains wood stand pieces, red sticky foam shapes and circles, wood crank, wood circles, white sticky foam, paper straws, plastic rods, paper squares, backdrop, felt pieces, thin sticky foam, felt Santa and sleigh pieces, felt reindeer pieces, and string.
The first thing to do is to build the stand. For this part, the kids will need the wood stand pieces and the red sticky foam shape to hold the parts together.
After following the simple instructions on building the stand, you can check the top view and make sure that the side piece is all on the way.
Also, make sure that all parts are on straight. The kids can also ask help from a grownup to make sure that everything is built correctly.
Here’s the finished stand, all on straight! All we need to do is finish the crank to build the mechanism and complete everything!
In building the mechanism, it requires that part B is already done.
The next part of the project is completing the crank, and for this activity, the kids will need the completed stand, red sticky foam shapes, wood crank and circles, and and the red sticky foam circles.
Here’s the completed crank, ready to be assembled with the stand. See how the pieces aren’t all lined up? That allows the reindeer and sleigh to stand at different positions.
To complete the mechanism, we’ll need some paper straws, plastic rod, paper squares, red sticky foam, and white sticky foam.
The plastic rods will hold the wooden circles and foams to make the mechanism work. After completing Part C, we need to test it out by spinning the crank. We need to make sure that everything’s lined up, the wood circles are pushed all the way into the crank notches, and the plastic rods are pushed all the way into the foam.
For Part D, we are going to finish the automaton by building Santa and the reindeer!
For this part, we will also be using the other felt pieces and this beautiful Christmas night sky backdrop!
Here are the felt reindeer pieces, sleigh, and of course, Santa!
We need to stick the felt reindeer pieces with face and no face to stick them onto one of the rods of the finished mechanism.
The last rod is for Santa and his sleigh!
Wonder how this craft works? It’s because of a special machine part that is called cam that takes a round-and-round motion, and it works because of the mechanism’s uneven shape.
Here’s the finished Automaton, and Santa and his reindeers are ready to deliver the gifts!
This project is really fun, and we have yet another Christmas decoration to add to our home!
The kids love the mechanism behind this craft, and they’re enjoying hand-cranking this craft to see how the reindeers make the Santa’s sleigh fly into the night sky!
This is one amazing holiday project that the kids and I really enjoyed doing. It makes science fun and even relevant to the season, plus it teaches kids how to follow instructions to get results. The included backdrop is really beautiful. It made us feel that it’s Christmas time. Kiwi Crate never fails to provide a fun learning experience, and that’s why we love it!
Visit Kiwi Crate to subscribe or to find out more about this fantastic kids’ craft subscription box! There’s still time to subscribe for the holidays, or to pick up a mega-pack of STEM fun in their shop!