Gold Choice Award Winner
Overall 10
Play Value 9
Cost Value 8
Design 9
Quality 10
Parent Appeal 9
Educational Value 10
Safety 10

Makey Makey An Invention Kit for Everyone

In Stores
Age:8+
MSRP:$49.95 ca
$49.95 us
Editor's Review

Our testing families loved the huge lerning potential that comes in this tiny box. Elegant in its simplicity and limitless in its possibilities, Makey Makey turns almost anything into a controller for you computer. The circuit board connects via USB and interacts with the computer just like a keyboard. Using the provided wires anything that carries an electrical charge can be used as a key. Included in the instructions are four ideas to get you started: bananas bongos, fist bump remote control, cardboard guitar game, and a veggie piano. There are also mny many other ideas on the Makey Makey website. We love how the kit encourages kids to think outside the box and realize the limitless potential of electronics. Staircases can be turned into keyboards, a paper and pencil can turn into a drum kit, and tinfoil swords can be given sound effects when they clash. The way Makey Makey works is by allowing the user to create switches that will close a circuit when connected. In much the same...

Tester Reviews

KIDS:

It is soooo much fun to play with. It was so cool how it works with the computer and it was very fun to experiment with it. I love connecting it to random household objects. The potatoes worked the best, hotdogs didn't work at all.  I'm really excited to try it with squishy toys like gummy worms, and I really want to try it with some of the games that I'm programming to see how it works. Jill (F10)

It is very interesting! I connected it and used it as a controller for a game I like to play on the computer. I like that I can make my own keyboard. The circuit board could be a bit bigger. When I tried to plug it into a banana like they suggested, it wouldn't work for the computer game I was playing. But then two bananas worked great for the bongos on the Makey Makey website. Licking my fingers helps to get the bananas working. Jack (M9)

It is so neat to turn banana's into a piano, or have the computer respond by touching my fingers together, I would have thought it would be complicated to do, but really it's not. I never would have believed electronics were so easy. Mia (F12)

This is really cool and awesome because you can just tap these buttons instead of the keys. It teaches you about electricity because you need to create a complete circuit for it to work. Zachary (M12)

It was great. We made pianos out of bananas and other stuff - you can do all kinds of stuff with Makey Makey. It is a toy but lots of grown ups use it too... It's sort of something for people who want to invent things or just make cool stuff. I liked following the directions and watching what other people made on the videos. Gram (M9)

I think this toy was really cool beacause you can play game's with out touching the key board and you can make your friends think their laptop or computer is broken. It was easy to open but a little hard to use, and the banana didn't work well for me. Evan (M8)

ADULTS:

Loving Makey Makey! Lots of fun and learning from a very small box! M7 and M9 really enjoyed using this set and learning about electronics in a hands on, exploratory way experimenting with different things from around the house to conduct the circuit and trying to figure out why some things work, others don't, and how even something that may not usually conduct changes when he added water. The instructions are very open ended, and encourage that exploration. We had seen Makey Makey demonstrated before, so knowing a bit about it helped. The instructions also encourage you to check out different things on Youtube, and seeing what other people had done with their Makey Makey was as fun as playing with the set. This is really something that could grow with your child - their understanding and enjoyment would be different at different stages. M7 actually spent more time with Makey Makey than M9, really enjoying using different materials and making predictions about what would work. I had put off opening this toy for a few days because I expected it would require quite a bit of parent involvement, but M7 and M8 are finding it fairly intuitive, and have set up various items as the piano, and the other inventions suggested in the instructions. But it does still require some adult involvement.  Jennifer Fraser

I am totally impressed by this simple little box, Mia (F12) figured out how to make the computer work by holding the different wires within minutes. She used all sorts of things around the house to see if they could conduct electricity. She played the piano on the screen while pressing on bananas! I had no idea how keyboards were made. I thought it would be very complicated but seeing her make a circuit and troubleshooting when it doesn't work was inspiring. Marie-Lise hache

Jack (M9) has been asking me non-stop to test this toy since we picked it up yesterday. When I said 'yes', he had it opened and figured out in no time. Minutes later he was using Makey Makey as a controller to play a game on the computer. Makey Makey is a kit that plugs into your computer and turns anything that conducts a bit of electricity into something that is digitally interactive.  I like that their website has ideas to get started...and that the possibilities really are endless. I don't mind saying 'yes' to screen time when Jack is creating with Makey Makey. A great blend of good ol' hands on creativity and technology. Jennifer Young

Manufacturer's Description

How does it work? Connect an apple to Makey Makey, then complete the circuit by touching it. Your computer thinks the Makey Makey is a keyboard, so touching the apple is like pressing a key. The computer just thinks MaKey MaKey is a regular keyboard (or mouse). Therefore it works with all programs and webpages, because all programs and webpages take keyboard and mouse input... Make + Key = MaKey MaKey! 

What Can I Make? - That's up to you! First, load up a computer program or any webpage. Let's say you load up a piano. Then, instead of using the computer keyboard buttons to play the piano, you can hook up the MaKey MaKey to something fun, like bananas, and the bananas become your piano keys. 

Or let's say you Google for an online Pacman game and draw a joystick with a pencil. Then you can play Pacman by touching the drawing. 

Or you could load up facebook or gmail and send a message on a custom-made alphabet-soup...

User Comments

No comments have been written about this toy.

Be the first one to write one!

<