What is it and where did it come from?
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Recently, at my son’s thirteenth birthday party, he was given a fidget cube. All the kids ooo-ed and ahhhhh-ed over this thing like it was the next video game (after all, this is the tech generation) and said they wanted one. After the party, I asked my son if I could look at it. This small green cube had something different on each side: a knob to push, spinning bearings, a button to tap, a ball to spin…. And all I could thing was “what a cool idea!” After playing with it for a while and watching my son try to get it back from me, I decided to look up the history of this nifty little cube.
The boring blah, blah, blah history stuff (that’s actually kinda interesting!)
In the spring of 1993, Catherine Hettinger designed the Fidget Spinner out of odds and ends in her home that her daughter played with in an attempt to keep her daughter busy while she was contending with her own health issues (isn’t that just like a mom?). While the invention was a fluke, she still had it patented in 1997 and the toy was lost in history.
Twenty years later, Catherine found she could not afford the $400 patent fee in order to protect her neat little toy and it lapsed. This left the door wide open for many companies to secure the specifications and mass produce the simple toy.
While these toys have become “the newest craze,” many schools have banned the toy due to distractions to children in the classroom. However, teachers of special needs children are finding that the children with ADD/ADHD or with special needs are able to use the toy to help children keep focus on tasks at hand or as stress release, respectively.