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Invent a helping machine

By Siôn Ap Tomos, Illustrator

Take the Maker Challenge set by illustrator and maker Siôn Ap Tomos with activities to help you create your own 3D avatar to inspire your inventing. There are how-to guides to help with your project – happy making!  Take care with sharp objects and get some adult help.

Siôn Ap Tomos is an illustrator and maker from Anglesey, Wales, UK, he creates illustrations that get used in lots of different ways and also likes to invent unusual objects and contraptions. He loves drawing so much that he always asks for pencils for his birthday!


Activity 1

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Get started

Draw an avatar of yourself, it could be how you look, how you'd like to look or a made up version of you, maybe you are an animal themed or fantastical outfit?

Activity 2

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Funny faces and serious ones too

Bring your avatar assistant to life by creating some different faces for it!

Activity 3

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Get making!

Use simple materials to make a 3D version of your avatar. Get an adult to help you with the cutting out.

Activity 4

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What do you want to say?

Think about things you'd like to say in different situations, maybe there are things that are hard to say yourself or that might help other people or even just make them laugh.

Activity 5

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Finishing your model

Customise your avatar using the facial expressions and messages you have created in the previous activities

Invention sheet

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Time to get inventing

What other inventions can you think of that can help you or other people? Think about things you perhaps find difficult to do, what might they be and what kind of machine could help you doing them? Could it be something that helps you physically or something that helps you to communicate more easily for example?  Don't forget to upload your invention below for a chance to win a Little Inventors book.

How to enter!

You can submit more than one invention idea.

Submit invention ideas through our upload page.

  1. Draw your inventionon the worksheet of the mini-challenge of your choice
  2. Scan or photograph the *whole* sheetas straight on as possible
  3. Upload it in JPEG, PNG or GIF format (choose a file)

Each invention idea will comprise of an image of a clear drawing, the name, age and location of the inventor, the name of the invention and a description, and a contact email address.

Examples of scanned images

Not so good