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Geek Dad: Awesomely Geeky Projects and Activities for Dads and Kids to Share

3.69  ·  Rating Details ·  433 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
The ultimate DIY project guide for techie dads raising kids in their own geeky image, in the spirit of "The Dangerous Book for Boys"
Today's generation of dads grew up more tech-savvy than ever. Rather than joining the Little League team, many grew up playing computer games, Dungeons and Dragons, and watching "Star Wars." Now with kids of their own, these digital-age dads
ebook, 240 pages
Published May 1st 2010 by Gotham Books (first published 2010)
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OK, so this book says it's not designed to be read front-to-back, which is precisely what I did. Hey, it was nearly Christmas and I was out of book and didn't want to go buy anything when lovely presents were likely on their way.

So there are bunch of different projects in here of varying level difficulty, geekiness, and relevance to my life. I was a little disappointed at the assumptions of suburbanity - many projects assume access to a backyard/shed/porch that is lacking in my urban lifestyle.
Exodus Books
Ken Denmead points out in the introduction to Geek Dad that most parenting books are about things to do to your kids rather than things to do with your progeny. (And I believe he would approve the use of the word "progeny" to denote one's offspring, as well as this self-conscious explanation of word choice.) This book is of the latter variety—specifically, it is a manual for geeky fathers to bond with and engender geekiness in their kids by sharing the sublime experience of geeking out about stu ...more
Jan 27, 2015 Mark rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The author asserts that all parenting books only suggest things to do to your kids, not with your kids. To the contrary, such books do exist, they're just not usually called parenting books.

This book does fill a gap in the children's activity book genre that are mostly cutesy crafts and proto-manly projects that have not yet been updated to account for cheap and commonplace consumer electronics and the rising popularity of geek, hacker, and maker cultures. So some of the projects are quite cool
Ken Denmead is a crafty guy but, much like the geek stereotype, his talents don't really include writing.

The book, after an introduction that tries too hard to validate the "Geek Dad" concept, contains a number of activites and/or experiments for parent & child to work on together. They vary from simple glue/sticky tape to serious electrical/computer programming level activities.

The instructions are mostly accessible but Denmead enables that accessiblity by eliding details, providing citati
Jul 28, 2012 Ryan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

It should be renamed "Lego presents Geek Dad." almost every single project involves Legos. This shows lack of creativity. There are so many other materials that can be used.

I also didn't like the nature of the projects. They're too simple. I'm all about simplicity, but when I read two or three in this book thati could have come up with on my own: I don't have too much respect. I looked to this book for ideas, not for things I could have thought of on my own. I also didn't like the chapter that
Sandie Lee
Jun 18, 2010 Sandie Lee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Geek Dad? So Much Fun!

Is your dad or hubby into projects? Would he be considered a Geek? If you answered yes to these questions (or even if you didn't) I have the perfect Father's Day gift.

Geek Dad by Ken Denmead (a self-proclaimed Geek) is filled with 30 original, fun and fascinating projects Dads (and moms) can do with their kids. I was totally in awe of these cool ideas and found myself wishing my dad was still with us so we could try them out. I especially like the 'Light-up Duct Tape Wallet
Apr 19, 2011 Karen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
I bought this for my husband for Christmas, along with Handy Dad and he picked out some projects to do with my son right away. He definitly falls into the "Geek Dad" category - he loves to take things apart and attempts to "refurbish" way too many things around the house. This book focuses that energy! I've already pre-ordered the next Geek Dad book for Father's Day.
Mar 22, 2015 Rebecca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: parenting
I got this for my husband, but read it myself, too. There are some pretty cool projects here, although they're all a little too advanced for our toddler. I think my favorites are the idea of using a solder pen to draw circuitry on paper to make origami with electrical components and the idea of turning the chore chart into a roleplaying game. To be revisited in a couple years.
Apr 05, 2015 Prashant rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Ken Denmead might be a geek but needs he help on writing. Project books (not parenting book as claimed by the author) need lots of pictures and steps which is missing here. Also, the book has a lot of references to North American cultural aspects which I could not relate to like Dungeon & Dragons. Many of the projects are expensive. Yet the projects look wonderful to do.
Aug 03, 2013 Andrew rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The easy ideas are so old that everyone must have tried them before, while the rest are very strange or way too ambitious.
And let's not even talk about spending 15 pages explaining, in detail, a complex system to use Dungeons & Dragons concepts for a home reward scheme.

Who could this book conceivably be correctly targeted at???
Jirka Janák
Jan 19, 2016 Jirka Janák rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: learning
Přečteno jedním dechem :) Ne teda slovo od slova, ale dost na to abych pochopil ideu/podstatu většiny projektů, aby mě napadlo pár dalších, a abych se těšil, až je budu všechny realizovat. Jediné co zamrzí, že na většinu z nich si budu muset ještě nejméně 5 let (spíš více) počkat, ale i tak. Dobrá práce :)
Erik Dewey
This is a decent book, but I guess I was looking for more interesting projects. It might be that I've done things like make my own boardgame with the kids so most of the projects didn't inspire me greatly, although the slip and slide has definite potential.

Personally, I'd have liked to see a wider variety of projects, maybe with a little science thrown in there to amaze the kids.
Dec 10, 2014 Nancy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crafts
This book would be great to try some of the projects with your own kids in a one-on-one setting, but not so great for a librarian looking for programming ideas to do with a roomful of teens. Most of the projects just sound too geeky, too involved, or require large items or need to be done outside. They're great projects. But just a little too much for me for right now.
Mar 26, 2015 Kelly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Meh! This book had great potential, but was not as detailed, in-depth, or sciencey as I'd hoped. Much of the book detailed how to invent board games, pretend play, or play with your legos. BUT - some projects using LED's or arduino boards were cool. If you want a more scientific build book - get a MAKE Magazine project book.
Jan 30, 2011 Chet rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting, but I did not rush out and start doing any of the projects with my grand kids. These projects generally take some planning (and buying of supplies). I will use it as a reference, such as planning an activity for the next holiday.
Missy Kirtley
My mother bought this for my husband for Christmas, and I think I got more out of it than he did! We're definitely planning on using some of these amazing activities with Alice when she's old enough to enjoy them.
Feb 24, 2012 Mark rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
All it took was reading the weak chapter on "building a board game with your kids" to turn me completely off to this book. The template was an insipid roll'n'move design that was, just from reading the rules, guaranteed to drag on much too long. My 6 year old comes up with better game ideas.
Dec 25, 2013 Philip rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This project book reads like a collection of blog posts... because it is! I found a few good project nuggets in there we will try. It has a wide range of genre projects, so you will probably find at least a few of interest to you.
Lisa Szczepanik
Apr 26, 2015 Lisa Szczepanik rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love this book! we have several of the projects bookmarked for summer days & the ones we've tried have been big hits with my tweens and their friends.
TJ Anderson
Jun 26, 2010 TJ Anderson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2010
pretty good. But you could probably just check out the blog and come up with a few of your own and be just as well off.
Peter Jones
My kids are too young for most of these... And I don't have most of the supplies for the ones that would otherwise interest me. But interesting to skim thru for free (from the library)
Aug 02, 2015 Eric rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
While it has some cool projects for families to do, I was really turned off by the restrictive way the the book defines the concept of a geek.
Apr 11, 2014 Jeff rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
A great group of fun geeky project ideas, that I can't wait to start (trying to) replicate with my boys!
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Ken spent most of his life as an ordinary geek, playing D&D, video games, watching and reading geeky movies and books. He was GuideBAT on AOL when it was cool (for geeks), and ran a play-by-email Star Trek RPG called Starbase Phoenix. He also succeeded in marrying the love of his life, and having two great kids.

Then, one day, everything changed.

He answered an open call for new writers for the

More about Ken Denmead...

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