Tinker Crate is a subscription box for kids and tweens ages 9-14 created by kids subscription box company KiwiCo. Each monthly Tinker Crate contains all the materials and instructions needed to create innovative, hands-on STEM projects, as well as a "Tinker Zine" full of educational information and additional activities.
This review is of KiwiCo's Tinker Crate (for ages 9-14), which costs $19.95 per month.
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we review boxes.)
My son was excited to find out the theme for this month's box was Pull Helicopter!
What's Inside This Box
Our Tinker Zine is full of educational information related to our project. This month's zine is full of info about helicopters, pressure, and of course, flight!
The directions for our project come on a separate sheet with illustrated steps broken into different sections. They always include helpful troubleshooting information as well and some extra tinkering ideas.
All of our pieces came neatly organized with a mix of wooden parts, plastic helicopter blades, foam pieces, zip ties, string, rubber bands, and a few other odds and ends. There was also a bag with supplies for a separate Paper Levitation Experiment which we'll be saving for a rainy day!
Part A: Build a Helicopter
The first step in building our helicopter was adding some foam strips to the outside of it, then we folded the blades down and placed another foam piece in the center.
Part B: Build the Launcher
The launcher was also pretty simple to make. We added the foam grips to our wooden piece and then I helped him secure the plastic tubes to the ends with some zip ties.
Then we added the bearing, dowel, and straw to the center and some foam pieces, and our launcher was just about ready.
Part C: Complete the Launcher
Then it was time to add the string and the pull handle. We just had to tie the ends together since there were holes in each piece for us to add string to. We turned the knob at the top to wind up our string.
Part D: Launch a Helicopter
We added our helicopter to the top and then we were ready to launch. The keyring and rubber band at the bottom made it so that our pull tab would wind itself back up after launch which I thought was very clever and helpful so that we didn't have to manually wind it each time. The helicopter blades sat on top and were just barely held in place by the plastic piece at the top. Then you pull the string and off it goes!
So our helicopter did not get as much air as we had hoped, but we are confident we can get it flying after a little bit of tinkering with it. My son was eager to keep trying and the rest of the kids all joined in with each of us trying to outdo one another!
Value - Was This Box Worth It?
The Cost: $19.95
This project was really easy to assemble and I love that we have some extra blades so that we can test out some more helicopter designs, too. We also have that extra paper levitation experiment and the zine provided tons of educational information so I think that's a pretty fair value this month!
Launching our own helicopter was an exciting theme for my son and I love the way they make these educational projects so engaging. It's also great we have a few more things to tinker with!
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To Wrap Up:
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? It is possible you might get this crate, but it is not a guarantee. From KiwiCo:
Crates are assigned each month based on availability and your crate history - not all subscribers receive the same theme each month.
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