How To Build A Robot
A Cool Way To Make Models For Beginners

The best thing about learning how to build a robot is you get to re-use household junk and turn it into great free crafts for kids. Building robots like this is fun and the delight kids show in making something that actually moves is fantastic.

If you have a look at our homeschool robots, you'll see building robot body parts is really about raiding the trash can!

t-rex dinosaur robot
pinterest logo

The credit for building those cool robots and teaching the kids crafts skills you need is definitely down to this book:

Stephen Munzer Making Dinosaur Robots from junk

The link takes you to the UK version, in the US you can get it here:

The best way to see how to build robots is to start here:

You'll see there how we made them, meet T-Wrecks and Terror-Saw, and find out how to turn a plastic fork into ferocious teeth.

dinosaur robot terror saw

Free Crafts For Kids

The way Stephen showed us robot building for beginners lit up all sorts of exciting ideas about how to build our own homeschooling robots.

His book is really cheap and goes into far more detail than I can on the techniques you need to use for how to build a robot.

The great thing is that my daughter Catherine had so much fun making those robots she used the homeschooling crafts skills she'd learned to come up with some really cool robots of her own. You're about to meet Squash Bot, Ray Droid and Saw Bot!

making a dinosaur robot

See how Stephen's dinosaur robot head comes from an air freshener with his own set of formidable plastic fork teeth?

Free Kids Crafts

When you've got the idea, you can adapt the kids crafts skills Stephen uses to learn how to build your own robot.

If you start looking round the house, you'll begin to see all sorts of opportunities for homeschooling free crafts for kids. 

I'm going to put some suggestions here, but you'll find more fun ideas in our homeschool page on building robot droids.

robot droids

And I've been a little rude and shown you Squash Bot naked so you can see the free parts you need to build a robot body can come from something as mundane as a hand cream container. You can see him in bronze on our homeschool robot droid page.

robot with toothbrush heads

Build Your Own Robot Body Parts For Beginners

Building robot bodies means finding a used plastic container which is relatively light and tall. Fun trash candidates to build a robot for free kids crafts are:

  • Homeschool spray cleaner bottles
  • Loo cleaner bottles
  • Window cleaner sprays

But there are lots of fun, free homeschooling choices lying around. Have a look at what Catherine chose to build a robot for her homeschool Ray Droid:

ray droid robot

His body is a plastic head torch container and check out his cool homeschooling glue bottle nozzle ray gun!

If you'd like more ideas for how to build something with free junk, why not turn a shoe box into a homeschool ocean diorama?

Or your kids could be inspired by our homeschool dragon crafts to make a free dragon out of junk.

dinosaurs for kids

You could also try making more dinosaur robots like T-Wrecks and turning it into part of our exciting dinosaurs project. See what fun it is to find out what life was like when the dinosaurs roamed!

Building Robot Wheels

Learning how to make something move is one of those really satisfying fun crafts for kids.

For beginners, we've had a lot of success with robots with milk bottle top wheels. You can stick two together with glue to make the perfect homeschool wheel. We know a plumber friend so we put free pipe insulation foam between them to make the wheels wider.

More popular choices for kids robot building for beginners:

  • Your kids can use jam jar lids, but if you're beginners and just starting out learning how to build your own robot you'll find they're not a great homeschooling choice - too wobbly.
  • CDs are great, there's usually loads of free ones in the homeschool junk pile and the lights shining off the sides look fun and cool! We stuck ours on film canisters to give support.
building robots from trash
  • A perfect choice for building homeschooling robot wheels are plastic lids off food containers like dried milk or cocoa powder which come complete with a helpful rim for running along the ground.

To build a robot that moves does mean getting the wheels right so have a look at our homeschool Ray Droid showing off these last two ideas.

saw bot
USUK

"Named to the 2012 Chicago Public Library's "Best of the Best" Reading List for Informational Books for Older Readers, Robotics: Discover the Science and Technology of the Future is a fun and educational introduction to the exciting field of designing, building, and operating robots....Features step-by-step instructions for building real robot models using ordinary craft materials and parts salvaged from recycled toys and other household devices."

Fun Crafts For Kids

Now for a fun homeschooling lesson in how to build moving robots using milk bottle tops.

  • Glue together two milk bottle tops to make a homeschool wheel. Repeat for four wheels.
making robot wheels
  • When the wheels are dry, heat a bradawl or a small screwdriver over a candle flame. This is dangerous and I recommend all the homeschooling kids crafts skills here need adult supervision.
  • Make a hole in the middle of the wheels using the heated bradawl. The hole should be just big enough for a barbecue stick to fit in tightly.
  • Mark two holes opposite each other at the front and back of your homeschool container.
  • Pierce the holes with the hot bradawl so that a barbecue stick runs free through you container and comes out the other side.
  • Fit your homeschooling robot wheels to two barbecue stick axles. You can use spacers cut from straws if the wheels push up too close to your robot body.

Building homeschool models is something we really enjoy, as you can see in our build a space probe page.

Cool Robots

Now you've learned how to make your homeschooling robots move you need to look round for what other free items you can steal from the trash for building robot heads and tails.

Fun choices to pinch for your free kids crafts are:

  • Coat hangers; if you saw the end off they make fun homeschool tails for robots.
  • Spray bottle nozzle heads look really cool.
  • Catherine chose a medicine bottle top to give a fun head when she was building Squash Droid.

You can often glue them on to the robot body or fit the head into the bottle neck.

Learning how to build a robot teaches all sorts of homeschooling fun kids crafts skills.

Books About Robots

My daughter Catherine is now our homeschool robot building supervisor; she picks all the free trash she wants to build a robot and works out how it fits together.

Fun Kids Crafts: Robot Building For Beginners

make a robot from recycled crafts

A word to the wise: when it comes to homeschool robot building for beginners a can of spray paint is the vital element required to turn your creations into really cool robots.

Catherine will take you through all the steps stage by stage so you can see exactly how to build your own robot in our page on homeschool recycled crafts.

dinosaur robot t rex

You can subscribe to my free newsletter. The November issue shows you how to build a robot out of a toothbrush, travel to the bottom of the Mariana Trench in a robot submersible and pilot a Mars rover.

If you want to learn how to build a robot the exciting thing is you don't have to look far; the trash can really does provide everything you need for free crafts for kids!


Homeschooling › Robots


3,000 facebook likes
Monthly Activities Newsletter
red arrow

FREE
Homeschool Newsletter

Enter Your E-mail Address
Enter Your First Name (optional)
Then

Don't worry — your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Monthly Activities.

"Thanks for all the great ideas....You have helped me more than you think. You are part of my gratitude journal. It was a blessing to have found your website. Best wishes," Marcia         

New! Comments

I'd love some feedback! If you'd like to make a comment about my site, please write in the box below.
share this page
follow me
Monthly activities newsletter
Enter Your E-mail Address
Enter Your First Name (optional)
Then

Don't worry — your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Monthly Activities.

MAY
2014 ISSUE:

model solar system

Space Activities

make your own board game

Make A Board Game

build a voyager space probe

Make A Space Probe

Start homeschooling guide
free

Free Start Homeschooling Guide

Crafts For Kids

easy crafts for kids

Crafts

Dragon Crafts

free e-book
Rachel's homeschool story

Free E-Book:

Homeschool Mom Wisdom

Follow Sonya @ Homeschool-Activities.com

grab our button

Simply copy the code in the box below and paste it in a text widget in your blog sidebar!

homeschool activities logo
free e book
science experiments

Ten Science Experiments That Won't Let You Down!

store at homeschooling-ideas.com

Wonderful Homeschooling Resources