Making doesn’t have to be art and it doesn’t even have to be pretty to look at.  To me “making” is about bringing something into being that didn’t previously exist.  It might be useful like a machine or delicious as in dinner.  These books about making are sure to inspire your kid inventor to make something new!

I am not a huge fan of subscription kits that come each month with a project to make inside.  This stems less from the quality of said box contents and more from the fact that four kids and one box never equals peace.   What I do love is inspiration.  These books provide just that.

No Wifi connection needed…

I’m a book lover; real books, audio books, the back of the cereal box.  I read it all.  In this age of technology it’s important to me to pass on to my kids what a treasure trove of information and inspiration books really are.  You can learn anything from a book!  (Click here for books about coding, books about art elements, or books about artists.)

Kid inventors and their agendas….

Does your kid inventor follow directions well?  Mine doesn’t and I know I don’t.  A giant box of Legos with instructions spanning multiple booklets or a recipe with more than three steps and I’m out.

Most of these books outline specific projects with materials list and step by step instructions.  Do not feel obligated to make your kid inventor follow any such steps.


My kid inventor is easily overwhelmed.  (I don’t know where he gets it.)  If I asked him to choose one of these books, pick a project, and see it through to completion there would no doubt be a power struggle followed by a melt down, probably mine.

Apparently inspiration just doesn’t work that way.  Annoying, right?

Vs. inspiration….

If books with interesting ideas, an assortment of trashy materials, and some free time happen to be available; watch out.  I have to think my kid is not the only one that works this way.  Of course he needs time to see his inventions out and materials to make them work.  But mostly he needs someone to recognize his inventions are way more awesome than anything that could get delivered in a box.  They’re his.

These books about making will add fuel to their imagination and provide plenty of inspiration to your kid inventor! Books for all ages and kinds of makers!

A low risk investment…

Books are cheap.  Library books are even cheaper.  (Unless you’re me.  Then Amazon prices may be cheaper than library fines,  But we like to support the library, ya know.)

Strewing interesting things around the house happens to be one of my favorite stealth modes of education.  Placing books in front of any of my four children and stating that I got them “just for them” seems to cause an immediate case of disinterest.  ‘Cause what does mom know?  Jokes on you kids because I know that causally leaving a stack of these books perfect for my kid inventor laying on the kitchen island will tempt him.

Pick a book, any book….

Junk Drawer Physics: 50 Awesome Experiments That Don’t Cost a Thing

The Robot Book: Build & Control 20 Electric Gizmos, Moving Machines, and Hacked Toys

Duct Tape Engineer: The Book of Big, Bigger, and Epic Duct Tape Projects

Rubber Band Engineer: Build Slingshot Powered Rockets, Rubber Band Rifles, Unconventional Catapults, and More Guerrilla Gadgets from Household Hardware 

STEAM Kids: 50+ Science / Technology / Engineering / Art / Math Hands-On Projects for Kids

The Big Book of Makerspace Projects: Inspiring Makers to Experiment, Create, and Learn

Junk Drawer Chemistry: 50 Awesome Experiments That Don’t Cost a Thing

The Art of Tinkering

Kinetic Contraptions: Build a Hovercraft, Airboat, and More with a Hobby Motor

The Invent To Learn Guide To Fun

Out of the Box

STEAM AHEAD! DIY for KIDS: Activity pack with Science/Technology/Engineering/Art/Math making and building activities for 4-10 year old kids

The Flying Machine Book: Build and Launch 35 Rockets, Gliders, Helicopters, Boomerangs, and More

Rosie Revere’s Big Project Book for Bold Engineers

Big Science for Little People: 52 Activities to Help You and Your Child Discover the Wonders of Science

Maker Lab: 28 Super Cool Projects: Build * Invent * Create * Discover

These books about making will add fuel to their imagination and provide plenty of inspiration to your kid inventor! Books for all ages and kinds of makers!

Make Series…

This series states that it’s target audience is grades 3-7 but after looking at them I know at forty years old there is plenty I could learn from them!  One thing I love about these books is they are broken down by subject, making each book a little less intimidating.  And if you fall in love with a subject and exhaust the entire book there are “more about” titles for many subjects so you can keep going!

Woodworking for Young Makers: Fun and Easy Do-It-Yourself Projects    

Make: Tech DIY: Easy Electronics Projects for Parents and Kids  

Electricity for Young Makers: Fun and Easy Do-It-Yourself Projects

Make: Design Your Own Circuits: 17 Exciting Design Ideas for New Electronics Projects

Make: Paper Inventions: Machines that Move, Drawings that Light Up, and Wearables and Structures You Can Cut, Fold, and Roll

Tinkering: Kids Learn by Making Stuff

Planes, Gliders and Paper Rockets: Simple Flying Things Anyone Can Make–KitThe es and Copters, Too!

Make: Rockets: Down-to-Earth Rocket Science

Making Simple Robots: Exploring Cutting-Edge Robotics with Everyday Stuff  

Be A Maker Series…

This series kind of reminds me of the younger sibling of the “Make Series” above.  Although the grades listed as being appropriate (grades 3-7) are similar the projects seem a bit more manageable for younger kids! The subjects available are endless.   Photography,   exploring the outdoors,  paper engineering,  robotics,  games, and music are just a few of the exciting titles!

These books about making will add fuel to their imagination and provide plenty of inspiration to your kid inventor! Books for all ages and kinds of makers!


There is no end to all the amazing books perfect for kid inventors; these were some that really excited me! 

Share what the favorites are in your house!