Yuen Ting’s DIY claw grabber toy with a string-pulley X/Y-axis gantry

Last weekend, we were jazzed to have Yuen Ting put another kit project through its paces in class!

Your geometry teacher may have related a variation of the following origin story for Cartesian coordinates: French polymath René Descartes was lying in bed in his lodgings in Amsterdam one day in the first half of the seventeenth century, watching a fly as it crawled, upside down, across his ceiling and it occurred to him to wonder how he might describe the path it had taken and its current position. It’s a charming tale and it may even be true.

Yuen Ting poised to begin guiding the claw grabber to one of the prizes included in this kit!

Yuen Ting’s latest prize is a DIY claw grabber toy, featuring an X/Y-axis gantry (and a lever that lowers the contraption’s plastic maw into the heap of translucent, snap-together-shelled prizes included with the kit). Besides the fun of putting it together and the experience of working with pulleys, we think that playing with this kit is a significantly more hygienic way for acquiring a gut-level grasp of Cartesian coordinates than allowing an insect pest to traverse your bedroom ceiling. Wouldn’t you agree?