When I was a child, one of my favorite gifts was a chemistry set I received for Christmas. I was the type of curious kid who always wanted to know how and why things worked. I’d dismantle my toys, electronics, and small household appliances. I think my mother may have bought me the chemistry set as a distraction. She probably wanted to keep me occupied to prevent the TV from becoming the object of my curiosity.
I spent hours playing with that chemistry set doing experiments and concocting amazing potions that I would try out on my sister’s dolls. Now that I think about it, some of the chemicals I was playing with were probably toxic and dangerous. But things were much different in the 70s and 80s. Kids were allowed to play with chemicals for fun.
As I grew older, I lost interest in chemistry and became more interested in electronics, circuitry, and computers. Each weekend, I’d beg my mother to take me to RadioShack to stock up on tools and supplies for my projects. My ultimate goal was to build my own robot like Rosie on The Jetsons. Unfortunately, I never managed to build that robot, but I did build a few cool circuit boards and small motors along the way.
When the TRS-80 Model 100/102 computer came out in 1983, I once again begged my mother to take me to RadioShack to get one. But at $800, this purchase was not in the budget. After that disappointment, I decided to build my own computer. Although I made a valiant attempt, I was no Bill Gates. It took me a whole decade to finally build a computer.
My 11 year old son has inherited my curiosity. I noticed it when he was very young. He’d ask a series of “What Would Happen If…” questions that would blow my mind. Many scientific breakthroughs have occurred because of someone’s asking “what w0uld happen if…?” On the flip side, that question has also led to much mischief. Like my mom, I realized that I needed to channel my son’s curiosity towards positive outcomes.
I started by buying him LEGO sets. He immediately fell in love and became a LEGO-fanatic. To say that there are at least 10,000 LEGO pieces in my house would be an understatement. But I tolerate it because I’m always impressed by my son’s innovative creations.
This year I plan to expand his imagination even more with two amazing gifts from RadioShack’s selection of interactive toys and innovative products:
1. Make: It Robotics Starter Kit – This kit contains almost everything you need to build a line-following robot or a walking robot. It also teaches some coding in the Arduino programming environment. If I had this kit when I was my son’s age, I would have definitely achieved my goal of building my own Rosie.
2. KORG LittleBits Synth Kit – I like this kit because it combines two of my son’s favorite things, building and music. My son likes to play around on my keyboard. After he builds his own synthesizer, he can join our family band – The Mochas.
I’m glad that RadioShack continues to be committed to serving those of us who consider ourselves to be makers, builders, tinkerers, dreamers. Because of the products I bought at RadioShack when I was a kid, I was able to make my imagination come to life. Now I can share that same magic with my son.
With a broad selection of learning toys and great benefits such as Price Match Guarantee and Ship 4 Free (If a store location is out of stock and they have it elsewhere in their inventory, RadioShack will ship it to you for free), RadioShack is the perfect place to find amazing gifts for your curious child.
Because I like these products so much, I’d like to give one Mocha Dad reader an opportunity to one. I’m offering a KORG LittleBits Synth Kit (retail $159.99) as the prize in this giveaway. To enter, answer the following question in the comments section:
How do you nurture your child’s curiosity and creativity?
- Sign up for the Mocha Dad Newsletter (5 extra entries)
- Like Radio Shack on Facebook (5 extra entries)
- Follow @mochadad and @RadioShack and Tweet This: Enter to win the @RadioShack #GiftSmart Giveaway @mochadad http://bit.ly/1pWcXuR (1 extra entry per tweet – 5 per day)
- Share any Mocha Dad post via Twitter, Facebook, StumbleUpon, Pinterest, or Google+ (1 extra entry for each share or comment)
Mocha Dad’s “RadioShack #GiftSmart Giveaway” starts on Wednesday, December 03, 2014 and ends on Monday, December 15, 2014 at 11:59 a.m. (CST), and is open to all Mocha Dad readers, subscribers, and/or fans 18 years old and older in the continental U.S. No purchase required. Relatives and employees of Goodall Family Media are not eligible to win. You are also ineligible if you’ve won a prize from this website within the past 30 days. One (1) winner will be chosen via Random.org and announced soon after the ending date. You must leave your contact information to collect your prize. If a winner does not respond within 3 days, a new winner will be chosen. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received compensation and/or one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my website. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” All opinions are my own. Allow 3-6 weeks for giveaway fulfillment. While RadioShack has provided promotional support in the form of prizes, Radio Shack is not administering the giveaway on this website. Prize value = $160. Visit the Winners Page to see the winner.