The balloon boat & Amphicar

Pedagogical guidelines and construction instructions

What is the balloon-powered boat and Amphicar?

The Amphicar described here is designed for children from 4 to 7 years old. Teachers can adapt the proposal to other ages.

The Amphicar is a toy that is a boat and a car at the same time. When building it, the children can stop when it is a boat or continue to make a car that can still be used as a boat like the classical Amphicar. The AutoSTEM Amphicar is made from a standard milk or juice carton, straws, wooden skewers, bottle tops and a balloon. It will move on its own on land or water when the balloon is inflated.

It results in a toy that can be used by the children in many ways and opens up a number of subject areas for further learning. Moving cars and boats are very motivating and exciting toys for children. It is fun for the children to be allowed to play with their Amphicars, once they have made them.

The Balloon carAmphicar being used on water

When constructing the Amphicar several learning goals can be achieved:

  • To practice measuring
  • To use a ruler to draw a straight line (or for measuring)
  • To learn about physics and mechanisms
  • To develop engineering competencies of analysis and construction
  • To learn mathematical concepts within the construction and assembly process, including shapes and numbers
  • Other soft-learning goals can be included; problem-solving and creativity
How to make an Amphicar tutorial

Instructions – how to use
The Amphicar to teach STEM concepts and Step by step guide – English

How to use the Amphicar to teach STEM concepts and Step by Step guide – Portuguese

Barca e Macchina Palloncino istruzioni in Italiano

Veiledning til konstruksjon og didaktisk bruk av Amfibiebilen på norsk kan lastes ned her

Лодка балон – Инструкции за изграждане

Video tutorial (see above)