Howtoons is a MIT based initiative geared towards empowering children to build with their hands.
“Howtoons, a cartoon that provides one-page, easy-to-follow, story-driven instructions on how to build science and engineering projects from readily available materials.”
In this one-page comic, how-to directions for building a raincoat from a trash bag are described.
“Howtoons will soon be inspiring kids from all nations to see beyond the world as it is...to the future they might build themselves...Future toons will describe multicultural projects, including a model of an outrigger canoe from the Marshall Islands, a helicopter toy popularized in Zimbabwe, and a steamboat from India.”
This particular example is of a recycled trash bag raincoat for kids to protect themselves from the elements, something that is often sorely needed in developing countries. Looking forward, the focus will be on teaching kids to use the resources readily at hand to accomplish a task. The long term impact will be developing the minds of billions of kids worldwide to see the commonly used and discarded object around them as materials capable of being upcycled and recycled for further use.