Here is a description of how to make a simple educational toy which led to the modern camera known as The Pinhole Projector.
This educational toy shows the principles of early photography and also the nature of light. To make these excellent educational toys [http://www.sciencetoy.co.uk] all you require is an old Pringles tin, some baking foil or wrapping paper, tape, a hammer, nail, and scissors.
In the beginning you will need to take about 5cm off the bottom of the Pringles tin and using the hammer and small nail, pierce a hole in the centre of the tin base at the bottom of the 5cm piece you cut off.
This hole will allow the light travelling in straight lines from whatever is being viewed into the pinhole projector.
Next, you need to put the plastic lid onto the top of the Pringles tub and stick the two pieces back together with tape, but this time with the plastic lid toward the opening of the 5 cm sawn off piece of tube.
The polythene lid, now set within the tube 5cm away from the small hole in the base, acts like a screen for the light projecting through the small hole in the tin base to project an upside down image upon.
Next Take your foil or paper and wrap it around the tube to make it look neat and tidy and block out any light through any gaps.
Now point your new science toy with the pinhole towards a bright strong image like a tree on a sunny day and if you look through the open end you will see an inverted image projected onto the plastic lid.
Why do you think the image is projected upside down?
If light travels in straight lines, light leaving the bottom of an object would travel through the small hole and end up toward the top of the screen and also the light leaving the top of an object would go through the small hole and end up at the bottom of the screen.
Playing with learning toys helps children to learn about the world around them, however making learning toys allows even more understanding into the science behind the learning toy as well as being a lot of fun.