DIY Ball Run

The DoSeum is a place where interactive fun and hands-on learning come together—a place where minds are always at play.  During your visit, our exhibits, programs, and classes will encourage young minds to explore the joy of learning through connections to STEM, the arts, and literacy, but curiosity and exploration don't have to end when you leave!

Explore our DIY Activities, Storytimes, and Questions from Kids that were created for you to DO at home and stay connected with your family while keeping minds at play in between your visits!

To learn more about how you can help support your DoSeum, especially during these unprecedented times, please visit our SUPPORT page.



DIY Ball Run

We are bringing a favorite DoSeum exhibit right into your home for this week’s DIY Activity — get ready to create your very own Ball Run!  This activity allows learners to explore simple machines, building materials, and how they can work together.  Ball runs can be simple or as complex as your child wants to make them! While building encourages them to think about common household products that can be repurposed for good ramps or tunnels, like a paper towel roll. 

Here Is What You’ll Need:
  • Paper or Journal
  • Pencil
  • Painter’s or Masking Tape
  • Construction Paper or Cardstock
  • Large, Flat Surface (e.g., wall, window, piece of cardboard) • Marbles or Balls of Various Weights
  • Cardboard Tubes and Straws (optional)
  • Scissors (optional)


Building Tips and Tricks:
  • This project is all about trial and error. Allow children to build as much of their ball run on their own as possible. When they ask for assistance, ensure that it is for something that they truly can’t do on their own. Help as little as possible.
  • Building a ball run can be challenging, and that’s okay! If children are frustrated, allow them time to step away and do something that will guarantee success before coming back to the challenge. Perseverance is a good quality, but it is also good to know that it is okay to sometimes take a break.
  • The six simple machines are: Inclined Plane (e.g., ramp), Lever (e.g., crowbar or claw hammer), Wheel & Axle (e.g., doorknob or screwdriver), Wedge (e.g., doorstop or axe), Pulley (e.g., curtain cord), and Screw (an inclined plane around a cylinder). Inclined planes and screws might be the most obvious machines to use in your ball run. How can you include other simple machines?


Ready to share your kids' Ball Run? Be sure to tag @TheDoSeum and use #DoSeumAtHome we love seeing all that you create!



See all DIY Activities > 

  • 111.2.b - (1)(B), (6)(A), (7)(A)
  • 112.11.b.1
  • 111.3.b - (1)(B), (7)(A)
  • 112.12.b - (1), (2)(A-C), (3)(B)
  • 111.4.b - (1)(B), (8)(E), (9)(A, E)
  • 112.13.b - (1), (2)(A), (3)(A-B)
  • 111.5.b - (1)(B), (6)(A)
  • 112.14.b - (1), (2)(A)
  • 111.6.b - (1)(B), (6)(A)
  • 112.15.b - (2)(A), (3)
  • 111.7.b - (1)(B)
  • 112.16.b - (1), (2)(D)

For more information on TEKS that were applied to this activity, please visit the TEA website.  

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