Of all the fun DIY kids crafts out there, this ultimate spy gadget is the perfect project for any bored kid. Plus it’s super cool. So, if you don’t know how to make a periscope, check it out, right now!
My 9-year-old son loves a good DIY project and this homemade periscope ended up being super cool. It wasn’t very difficult to make either. With just a few supplies, you’ll be on your way. Take a look!
What is a periscope?
A periscope is a special tool that brings what is around corners, over walls or beyond your line of sign into view. Think submarines. It works by using mirrors to bounce light from one place to another. When light falls against the first mirror it is reflected onto the second mirror. The light then bounces again, but this time it reflects into the observer’s eye.
Gather your periscope supplies
You’ll only need a few supplies to make your very own periscope. You might be able to find most of these items at home. But we were able to find our supplies at the Dollar Store. Here’s what you’ll need:
- White foam 20×30 inch poster board cut into four 20″ x 4.5″ strips (see image below)
- Two square craft mirrors
- Utility knife or scissors
- Hot glue gun
Cut and glue the foam board strips together
Cut your foam board into four 20″x4.5″ strips. Then, trace the outline of your square mirror on the end of two of the four foam board strips. Make sure you leave about a 1/4″ space between the mirror and the end of the strip. Then cut out the square that you just drew.
Next, hot glue the four boards together to form a really long rectangle. Make sure that the boards with the cut out squares are glued opposite each other and on opposite ends (see the diagram above).
Insert the mirrors
When learning how to make a periscope, pay attention to how you insert the mirrors. Insert the bottom mirror at an angle into the bottom hole so that it reflects up. The mirror should fit snuggly against the interior side walls. If you can see the ceiling after inserting this mirror, then it should be in place correctly. If you can’t see the ceiling, make adjustments to them mirror’s angle until you can. Hot glue the mirror in place.
Then, insert the second mirror at an angle in the top hole so that it reflects down. Then hot glue that mirror in place as well.
Decorate your periscope
My son decorated his periscope however he wanted. You can use markers, crayons and even glue on beads and other craft materials. He also wrote on it which way is up so he didn’t get confused when looking through it.
Test it out!
Now for the fun part. Find an area where you can hide behind an object and be able to look over the top of it with your periscope such as a fence, stairwell or kitchen island. Look into the mirror on the bottom hole and you should be able to see the view on the other side of the object. It’s super fun! My kids totally got a kick out of this. They thought it was so cool.
I hope you learned how to make a periscope and that it turned out fabulous. Let me know how it goes in the comments below.
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