Remember that classic Sesame Street video about how crayons are made? We watched in awe as crayons were rolled off the assembly line, wrapped in paper, and then slipped into those familiar cardboard boxes. Kids today are just as fascinated by how things are made, and they’ve got a lot more videos to choose from! Watching these videos together is a terrific way to encourage the next generation of engineers, designers, construction workers, and more. Here are some of our favorites.
The original Sesame Street classic is still worth watching, but for older kids who’d like more details about the process involved, try this up-to-date version.
Most kids probably know cheese comes from milk, but do they know what it takes to turn milk into cheese? This video has the answers.
3. LEGO Bricks
This detailed video shows how the factories work to make LEGO bricks, including some really cool automation. You’ll learn the whole process from plastic granules to finished LEGO kits, ready for sale.
4. Toilet Paper
After widespread shortages in early 2020 during the pandemic, toilet paper is something we’ll never take for granted again. This video about how they make it will help you appreciate TP even more.
Sports fans will love learning how things are made for their favorite game. This video about baseballs details the painstaking hand-stitching that still goes into each professional baseball. You can also learn about rubber balls (like basketballs), baseball bats, and footballs.
Who wouldn’t be mesmerized by a cement mixer full of chocolate sprinkles? (OK, it’s not really a cement mixer, but it sure looks like one.) Bonus tip: Enjoy a bowl of sprinkle-covered ice cream while you watch videos about how things are made!
7. Maple Syrup
Speaking of sweet things, kids will definitely love learning where one of their favorite breakfast treats comes from. From maple tree to bottle to pancakes … that’s how things are made into something delicious!
This video on how things are made is perfect for kids and teachers. Science teacher Doug traces the history of pencils, then shows what it takes to make the pencils we use today.
When kids learn that silk fabric comes from caterpillars, they might be a little surprised. But that’s just part of the fascinating process that goes into making this luxurious fabric.
First, listen to the song “Where Do They Make Balloons?” by They Might Be Giants. Then, get the answer by watching this cool video that tours a balloon factory.
11. Paper Money
So-called “paper” money is usually made from a mix of paper and fabrics, with special dyes and other counterfeiting measures. Science Doug shows you how it all comes together to make the dollar bills you know so well.
Pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters are familiar sights, but where do they come from? This video by the U.S. mint has the details.
There’s no more exciting aspect of chemistry than fireworks! Learn how they’re assembled and tested, what makes them work, and how professional displays are planned.
14. Gum Balls
Oh, the joy of blowing a giant bubble of gum! Get a little history of gum, then discover the five-day process of making those brightly colored gumballs.
Kids do a lot of reading and writing, but do they ever stop to think about how books are made? Take a tour of a book-printing factory to find out.
Ask kids what their sandbox and the windows of their classroom have in common, and they’ll probably have no idea. Watch this video from science teacher Doug to find out!