Grade Levels: K-3

In this set of activities adaptable for grades K-3, parents and educators will find ideas for teaching about Alexander Graham Bell and the invention of the telephone. These activities are designed to complement the BrainPOP Jr. Alexander Graham Bell topic page, which includes a movie, quizzes, online games, printable activities, and more.

Classroom Activities for Teaching About Alexander Graham Bell

Invention Convention

Hold an Invention Convention in your classroom and if possible, collaborate with other classrooms! Have pairs or small groups design a creation. You may wish for students to also try creating a prototype. The invention can help people do a small task or address an inconvenience or a problem. The invention can even be an improvement on an existing machine or device. Is there a way to prevent headphone cords from becoming tangled? How can we save energy at home? Brainstorm different ideas and have teams meet and plan. At the Invention Convention, groups can describe their inventions and share them with the whole class.

Inventors’ Day

Have students choose an inventor and prepare a report. You may want to assign specific inventors to students or have them select their own, such as Henry Ford, George Washington Carver, or Thomas Edison. How did the inventor get the idea for their invention? How have the inventor’s contributions changed people’s lives? Students can dress up like their inventor and talk about his or her life and work, and bring in props, drawings, photographs, and other visuals. You may wish to create stations around your classroom where students set up their displays and stand next to them. As other students walk around to view the stations, each child can come “come alive” as the inventor and explain his or her life’s work.

Family and Homeschool Activities for Teaching About Alexander Graham Bell

Impossible Invention

Throughout history, inventors have been told that their ideas were impossible. But, through hard work, innovation, and ingenuity, many inventors were able to prove their dissenters wrong. Have your child think of an impossible invention. What would this invention do? How would it help people? Then have your child come up design and sketch what the invention would look like. Encourage your child to be creative!


Demonstrate the basic principle of how a telephone works by creating your own! Connect two paper or foam cups with a piece of string. Then talk in one cup while your child listens through the other. Explain how sound can cause the string to vibrate, or move back and forth. The sound travels along the string from one cup to another. Experiment with how the length or thickness of string can affect the sound. Pull the string taut and talk, then let it fall slack and try talking again. How is the sound quality affected by the string’s position?