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A 'cool' invention

By Staff
Madison girl creates award-winning toy
Thomas Tingle
Record Managing Editor
It's called a Cool Bracelet.
With this bracelet, a child could record his or her voice or other noises with the push of a button. Later, the child could play back what's been recorded. The bracelet could be used in an "undercover" way, or just for fun.
That is the name Nicole Furno, a third grade student at Heritage Elementary School in Madison, has called her invention. Furno was selected by the Wild Planet Toy Company as one of the top 100 kid inventors in the country for its annual Kid Inventor Challenge.
The Wild Planet Toy Company encourages teachers who teach students in third, fourth and fifth grades to introduce the toy design process – including creative writing, problem solving, the scientific method and more. Furno is a student of Laurel Shockley at Heritage. The third and fourth grade students in Shockley's enrichment classes participated in the Kid Inventor Challenge.
Furno said she came up with the name for her invention and she got a little help from her family in its creation. Although a real Cool Bracelet hasn't been made, Furno can log on to the Wild Planet Kid Inventor Challenge 2002 Web site and see her design of the bracelet on the site.
"I like to watch undercover movies – like Spy Kids II, and that is why I came up with this idea for the bracelet," Furno said. "It was a lot of fun.
When Furno found out that she had been selected as one of the top 100 kids in the nation for her idea, she asked her teacher if that was good.
"When you think about how many kids entered this challenge and to be selected as one of the top 100, that is fantastic," Shockley said. "Students have fun inventing their own toys, and they gain confidence and new skills through creating, refining and promoting their ideas."
Furno was one of three students in Alabama chosen among the top 100 kid inventors by Wild Planet.

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