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What is inventive adaption?

At Buildit Challenge, kids practice inventive adaptation & improvisational engineering; a process we call "Yankee ingenuity." Our mission is to build communities of hands-on learners who are discovering ways to apply STEAM to fix, make, build, and change the world.

Inventive adaptation is the principle of taking objects or systems from one area of life and repurposing them to function in another system or area of life. Inventive adaptation has a role in almost every modern invention. For example, the prototype for the hovercraft was a set of tin cans (food containers) attached to an industrial air blower. When the air blower was engaged, a high pressure area formed under the smaller tin can that lifted the object. When Sir Christopher Cockerell built the first hovercraft from seemingly unrelated objects, he used inventive adaptation. When students repurpose everyday objects to create their projects for a Buildit Challenge, it is an exercise in inventive adaptation.