Fun with Five – What a load of rubbish!

Every once in a while you get a present that makes you wonder what they were thinking.  We’ve all had them, most recently mine was an electric omelette maker.  That got donated PDQ.

Kids haven’t quite mastered the sincerity behind a carefully phrased “You shouldn’t have.” and so this one went down like a lead balloon when it was received almost a year ago: The MakeDo Find & Make Robot

If you’ve not encountered MakeDo before, the ‘robot’ is a box about 6″ square and 1.5″ deep containing an unpromising collection of plastic clips, a couple of hinges, a ‘safety saw’ and some stickers. You need to supply a load of rubbish yourself – boxeees, pots, tubes and the like.

Thing 4, to whom this gift was bequeathed, rediscovered it when we returned from France and demanded to make a robot just like the one on the box.  I said we’d see what we could do and we started to keep hold of things we’d normally recycle…

Last Saturday was the big day.  It was one of those rare and wonderful things in Shetland – A Nice Day.  So the rubbish was brought to the garden table and  building commenced.


First of all they had to decide what sort of Robot to build and which stickers they would need.


Some parts needed cutting to shape. The ‘safety saw’ is pretty good on cardboard tubes.


All of the Things present assisted in the build and decorate.


And Frank the Robot was completed.  I think the look on Thing4’s face says this present has redeemed itself.

I know from the price sticker left on the box that this weighed in at under six quid.  It kept 4 boys occupied for over an hour.  The connectors we used to make the robot are reusable, the stickers are not unless we’re really careful and peel them off.  It makes you look at the packaging things come in in a totally different light.  That shoe box would make a superb body, the insert that pen came with a fun control panel…

If you see these things in the shop and wonder if they’re worth it, they definitely are.

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