GGNZ Deconstruction

Report Copyright Infringement View in OSM UK View in OSM NZ


A chance for Pippins to learn what is inside appliances by taking items apart. STEM activity.
Added by the GGNZ Programme Team


Old small appliances to take apart
Selection of hand tools, including small screw drivers
Ice cream containers or similar to collect loose items


Gather old appliances – ie toaster, clock, computer keyboards, hard drives, bread maker…anything you have to hand (or ask the parents to donate some).
Ideally have one appliance per girl but for larger pieces have a couple of Pippins work together to take it apart – this is great team work and encourages great discussions.
Be sure to have lots of screwdrivers and tools – especially small ones. An adult may need to loosen the screws first – but allow the Pippins the satisfaction of taking them out themselves. Some things will be able to be taken apart at a table but some may need to be placed on the floor so the girls can access the screws at the right angles. You may also need extra adults to help supervise.
Lots of conversation will come from this
• “Can you find the element?” (for anything that heats)
• “Are there switches?” Or cogs? Or wires? Or springs?
• All the keys should just pop off the keyboard – can your Pippins find their initials?
• “Do you need a Philips screwdriver or a Flat Head screwdriver? Please pass the pliers.”
• “Check that your hands are in a safe place when Sarah uses the screw driver. If her hand slips it might hit you.”

Have a first aid kit handy and consider getting lots of plasters as there may be some cuts from inexperienced or enthusiastic tool users. Consider having an ice pack handy to slow bleeding too.

Have an ice cream container, or similar, available by each appliance to collect ALL the screws, springs and pieces that come off. Collect these for an art project next term.


  • STEM
  • Tools

Badge Links

This activity doesn't complete any badge requirements