Paperclip Electronics

Connecting naive electronic circuits with everyday things: paperclips, tape, kitchen foil…
What is a battery? How does electric light work? Can you connect it yourself? Where will you wear your circuit? What does it do?

This workshop is an opportunity for children who are too young to solder to experience how electronics work. We will work our way through basic theory like polarity and switches while we make connections out of everyday materials.

The results can be worn or fitted freely into clothing or objects: A necklace lights up the dark inside your coat. A ring connects two friends. A secret switch inside your pocket sends a signal to those who know you. You can wear your circuit on your sleeve or as a secret under your collar.

Duration: 1 – 2 hours [negotiable] Age range: 5 – 7 years old

Materials: Paperclips, LEDs, batteries, resistors, electrical tape, duct tape, double sided tape, medical tape, conductive thread and wire, clothing hooks and snaps.

Tools: Fine round-nosed pliers, scissors, needles.

Amber Festival, Istanbul, November 2009
I-Machine, Edith-Ruß-Haus für Medienkunst, Oldenburg, May 2009

Andersen, K., Paper Clip Electronics – a process of making something simple extraordinary. In Medien Kunst Vermitteln, Editor: N. Luth and S. Himmelsbach, Edith-Ruß-Haus, 2011.