It’s one thing to have your little ones master new vocabulary with ABC’s and budding language skills, but what about encouraging the weirder (aka more fun) side of science mastery? Enter Young Mad Scientist’s First Alphabet Blocks by Xylocopa, featured at this year’s Maker Faire in Austin, TX. These laser-carved cubes of A-B-C alchemy, are just the sort of thing that will get your tot primed for creative storytelling, spelling bee championships, and mad science for engaged young minds.


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Xylocopa is the genius creation of a husband and wife duo from Tucson Arizona. Their inspired handiwork includes a laser-cut line of laser-cut jewelry, beads, home decor, and other one-of-a-kind creations from wood, paper, bone, shell. Their Young Mad Scientist’s First Alphabet Blocks are a crafty attempt to make science fun for kids of all ages, while boosting proficiency in lab equipment terms and activities. The blocks contain carefully engraved illustrations with a simple ABC introduction to the concept depicted.

Each block measures 1 3/8 inches square, and depicts six mad science concepts and the appropriate letters. The set includes all 26 letters of the alphabet on five blocks (six illustrations per block). Based on pen and ink drawings that are carefully laser engraved onto a solid block of eco-friendly American maple wood, Xylocopa does not use any dyes or harmful finishes on the blocks, and all of their edges are rounded and smooth.

These blocks are a mad, and perhaps subversive way to share in the wonder of science, while also flaunting your inner geek to anyone who challenges your arcane know-how.

A complete list of the images represented by the letters is as follows:

A – Appendages ?B – Bioengineering ?C – Caffeine? D – Dirigible
E – Experiment ?F – Freeze ray? G – Goggles ?H – Henchmen
I – Invention ?J – Jargon ?K – Potassium ?L – Laser M – Maniacal
N – Nanotechnology? O – Organs ?P – Peasants (with Pitchforks)
Q – Quantum physics? R – Robot? S – Self-experimentation
T – Tentacles ?U – Underground Lair? V – Virus? W – Wrench
X – X-Ray? Y – You, the Mad Scientist of Tomorrow ?Z – Zombies

Young Mad Scientist’s First Alphabet Blocks retail for $40

+ Xylocopa

via Make:zine