Theory Play Share & Discuss

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Teach Factories
with Contraption Maker

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Factories & the Industrial Revolution

This lesson takes a look at factories and teaches the students how to create their own puzzles in Contraption Maker.

Teacher Resources

  • Theory: This lesson introduces your students to the Maker Lab portion of Contraption Maker.
  • Play: The students create their own contraptions in the game’s Maker Lab.
  • Share & Discuss: These tasks focus on the playing experience and the industrial revolution.

Theory: Factories & The Industrial Revolution

  • Factories are industrial sites where goods are made, refined or both.
  • Most modern factories have large warehouses, machinery and ever more often, automatic robots.
  • The Industrial Revolution popularized factories when traditional workshops could not longer meet growing demands. The steam engine and other innovations helped to make factories ultimately the dominant method of goods production.


Teacher Resources


Lesson Goal

Play Contraption Maker! You now get to use the game’s Maker Lab to build your own factory (remember to save often!). Follow the instructions below:

  1. Select the Maker Lab in the main menu. Then select “New”.
  2. Familiarize yourself with the Maker Lab. If you are having trouble, don’t worry - the next slide will provide additional help!
  3. Create your own factory! Be sure to include at least one conveyor belt and part creator.

Teacher Resources

Go through this slide together to make sure the students know what the lesson goal is. The next slide includes additional hints for the students, if they are having problems.

How to Play

To start playing, click on Puzzles.

Gameplay screenshot

Next, select the puzzle pack you'd like to play. It's a good idea to begin with the first one, Tutorial Puzzles.

Gameplay screenshot

Finally, select the puzzle you would like to play.

Gameplay screenshot

About the Maker Lab

Gameplay screenshot.

Teacher Resources

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you’ve accidentally selected the wrong layer, you will not be able to add parts to the contraption. Make sure you have the “Part Layer” selected in the bottom right of the screen to be able to place parts.

  1. This bar contains useful options, such as undo/redo, save contraption, zoom in/out and so on.
  2. This button works the same way as when playing puzzles: you get to try out if the contraption works!
  3. This window includes all the objects of the game, which will allow you to build your contraption. Just drag and drop to add! Click on a component already part of the contraption for additional options and the “?” sign for further information.
  4. This window includes the scenery objects. Your students can ignore this for now because they have no gameplay effect.
  5. This window lets you change the order how background scenery is displayed. In other words, it allows you to place objects in front of other objects that are in the background. None of these objects or this window have any effect on the gameplay.

Share & Discuss

Share & Discuss

  • Was it easy to use the Maker Lab? Was it fun?
  • What kind of factory did you make? Did it work?
  • Was there something you wanted to do but didn’t know how to? What was it? Maybe someone else in the class can show you how.

Tasks after Playing

  • Why are factories so important to the modern way of life? What was typical of products before the revolution?
Show Notes

The main benefit of factories were originally to drive down costs and radically increase the efficiency at which goods were produced. In modern times, with modern automation and robotics, many complex products (such as modern cars and computers) would be completely impossible to create solely by hand. Products before the industrial revolution were made almost exclusively by hand, and meant that many products that are bought today, such as clothing and tools, were made at home. Even if many products were not made by the ones who used them, home maintenance and repair was ubiquitous.

  • What sparked the Industrial Revolution? What effects did the revolution have? You can look online for answers.
Show Notes

The revolution was sparked by new technologies, including the steam engine, and by growing populations and demands. Cities began to provide so much demand that large-scale factories became profitable.