Dewey Mac, Kid Detective Book - Make DIY & STEM Spy Gadgets
STRETCH GOAL TIME!!!
Through your support this book will by no means be a basic affair. Your pledges have afforded me the possibility to have some great art and design concepts (more info soon). This is very important since I want to make sure the AKA Detective Manual looks like an actual kid's notebook. The book will be bound by a nice 5.5 x 8 color hardcover. I can't wait to see it printed and to get your reactions! Thanks and keep sharing and supporting!!
Dewey Mac and the Case of the Dog Gone Dog is a kidlit adventure about a twelve-year-old boy named Dewey who starts to play detective when he hears the mayor's dog was stolen. Dewey and his hilarious friend Ched get in over their heads while having a lot of fun solving a case that is not as simple as it might seem. The novel is moving, engaging, and a little juvenile--think Diary of a Wimpy Kid meets a classic action movie like Raiders of the Lost Ark. You can read the first chapter here.
In Dewey Mac and the Case of the Dog Gone Dog, Dewey is always inventing gadgets to help him solve the crime, deal with his family, and survive the school bully named Zinc. The Awesome Kid Agency (AKA) Detective Manual, gives instructions on how to recreate 10 spy gadgets, detective techniques, and pranks that are part of the story. Once funded, the number of spy gadgets will increase as stretch goals. The AKA Detective Manual is also educational (shhh, don't tell the kids) as it explains the why and how behind each entry. Readers can use common items around the house to inexpensively make these real working toys, including:
- a foxhole radio (a working radio out of things you can find around the house)
- write and read codes
- a Glass Ear (a microphone that listens through windows)
- the Interrogator 3000 (a lie detector)
- laser communicator (transfer sound over a cheap laser pointer)
- room alarms
- make a microphone and speaker from scratch
- and many more
No project is too hard or too expensive, so all children can enjoy, experiment, and learn from these STEM experiences. I brought these gadgets to this year's World Maker Faire in NYC. I was honored with the Editor's Choice Award and the Educator's Choice Award.
For a list of all the gadgets and some samples, check out: http://www.deweymac.com/notebook.html
As a teacher, I think it is very important that students have more exposure to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) ideas. (STEM is used in educational circles while STEAM is used in maker circles). I have seen many students who were truly intelligent, struggle in school, because reading and writing were weaknesses.
Great question. In donating to this project you will help me complete these final, but expensive steps. This book is more than just a fun, fast-paced adventure story full of twists and turns. It is a learning experience.
These boys and girls are full of great imagination, artistry, and passion, but the average school setting doesn't capture their limitless creative and curiosities. This book is for them and gives them a chance to shine.
In building each spy gadget, kids will experience STEM ideas in a self paced, project based learning lesson. Building each project will help kids turn off their video games and have fun experiences bonding with adults while using skills in need for future careers.
People a lot smarter than myself are all saying that focusing on STEM will not only help fill our jobs, but those employees will typically make more their non-STEM focused jobs. In our current economy, STEM jobs go unfilled. In other fields there are 3.6 people unemployed per job.
Each project subtly involves STEM ideas. Take the Tatter Tosser (a potato gun) for example. There is science in how the potato is propelled, technology in how it's built, engineering and art in the design, and math with our measurements (generally a weakness for most students). The natural learning process of Project Based Learning will guide an intrinsically motivate the children.
To assist in building each gadget and gizmo, I will be making short instructional build videos. They will be educational, but most importantly, entertaining--think Bill Nye the Science Guy. Exclusive first access will be given as a part of some pledge packages. The videos will be available to the public a month after they are available to my supporters.
Here's a sample for the lie detector:
- To build lifelong readers through an enjoyable adventure novel
- Increase the amount of STEM or STEAM experiences children have.
- A self released book is great, but I would like to find a print publisher so this book can be found on bookshelves, book fairs and easily discovered by children. Attention from a successful Kickstarter campaign will help with this.
- Introduce kids and parents to the world of interdisciplinary project-based learning, or just call it making.
- Have kids turn off their TVs, cell phones, and video games. Building these gadgets can also be great bonding experiences between parents/guardians and their children.
- I want the pages from the AKA Detective Manual to be as clear, descriptive, but kid friendly, and funny as possible. This is going to take some time and experimenting to make sure I put out the best, but also most accessible gadget instructions.
- Prototype as many designs as possible so I have the most adaptable, simple, and clear projects possible.
- I already have some very skilled artists lined up to provide artwork for both e-books.
- Build Videos - I have shot and edited one instructional video. I was able to do this because of the kindness of Steve Newbert from All Occasions Video (If you’re getting married in the Philadelphia area, give him a call. He’s the best!) The funds will help produce videos for all the remaining gadgets!
I have finished writing the story and I'm currently in the process of writing the AKA Detective Manual. Funds raised will help to make sure these instructions are clear and practical. This will take some money so I can beta test as many different versions to find the best.
The funds will be used to develop the best methods for creating these gadgets so the reader can as well. I’m also hoping to bring this idea to a larger audience through Kickstarter. Why Dewey Mac? - I won an Editor’s Award at Maker Faire - Encourage reading, as well as STEAM: Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math.
Your donation, even if it is small, entitles you to a lot of perks. The more donations, the more perks (announced if funded) for you so please share on facebook, twitter, instagram, Linked in, or any other form of social media.
T-Shirts will be fulfilled by:
Other Ways to Support:
Feedback - This is my first Kickstarter campaign. Any advice or constructive criticism to make this project more successful is welcomed. Are there any perks that you would like to see.
Sharing is Caring - Share this page with all of your friends on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other form of social media. If you do, please add a link to this page and use #deweymac. At the end of the funding window, I'm going to pick 25 people at random and send them a lie detector kit. The more times you share, the more chances you have. I also made a flier that can hang in libraries, schools, community centers, anywhere parents who want to have their children learn in a new way might go. Download the flier here.
Be a part of the Team - After Kickstarter, my goal is to have the book published by a large publisher. I can also use the help from artists, animators, book reviewers, and more. Send me a message and join the team.
Alert the Media - Feel free to recommend this page to any media outlets: blogs, television, magazines, newspapers. The more attention we receive the more likely we are to be funded and have some great stretch goals. If you do alert any media, please message me. I'll put you in the drawing for a free lie detector kit
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT & INTEREST!!!!!!
There are three clips in my video from www.achive.org:
- The Monster Maker (1944) -http://archive.org/details/monster_maker_ipod
- MacGyver Promo Commercial - I know nothing about this clip, except for that it is hilarious. Really, it is. It could be from the 80's or now; I'm not sure. I wish I could have gone to Orsmorg to meet these people.
- How to Study (1946) - http://archive.org/details/0261_How_to_Study_E00470_00_39_40_00
Risks and challenges
- The narrative story is already finished. The AKA Detective Manual is only about half finished. I have a group of great makers around me that are ready to assist with the writing, if needed.
- The amount of funding will decide how much artwork. I have a few amazing artists lined up to provide artwork. As soon as we reach our funding, I'll have our artists get started.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)