Parent’s Guide to Inventors Fair

Guidelines for Parents and Guardians



A child’s experience should NOT be diluted by the selection of winners. It is wise to remember many important discoveries and inventions were not at first accepted or appreciated for their benefits. The overall experience is intended to generate more creative thinking and problem solving skills, not to mention a greater appreciation for how things are often taken for granted yet were invented at some time by someone. Help your child to understand the importance and privilege of competing in Regional Inventors Fair. The lessons learned can raise the bar for a lifetime!


Your child’s school is invited to participate in our Annual Thomas A. Edison Festival of Light Regional Inventors Fair. This unique educational opportunity promotes your child’s potential development of lifelong skills in preparation to meet the demands of the future.

Participating schools each receive a set of program materials with a list of resources as well as remarkable opportunities for students to showcase their creativity. The exciting Thomas A. Edison Festival of Light Regional Inventors Fair is but one on this list. Guidelines will help to clarify the process and provide a common ground from which educators benefit.

Teachers may have their classrooms focus on the regional fair or select from one or more nationally sponsored competitions. Their students can pursue individual and/or small group projects. The steps taken to fulfill the requirements of Thomas A. Edison Regional Inventors Fair will better prepare them for several of the nationally sponsored competitions. Very significant scholarship awards and prize monies will benefit the student winners and in some cases their schools and community!

It is very important to recognize that Regional Inventors Fair is limited to individual student participation. Only one student per exhibit will be recognized for purposes of selecting winners and awarding prizes. Only one trophy and award may be claimed for each category.

Sharing in the process of inventing with your children or their classmates is not only acceptable it is encouraged. The emphasis here is on being supportive rather than assuming a lead role. The Log Book should be used to record any and all assistance provided to the student inventor.

Fairness and safety are very important for all involved. Inventors must meet all safety rules and regulations to participate in the regional fair. Review the exhibit space dimensions with your children. Prototypes or models must fit within or immediately below the 32 by 18 inches table space allowed. Consider a small model of large inventions, or use photos or illustrations.

In the regional fair, all kindergarten through third grade students will be escorted to a parent pick up area after completing the judging process. Instructions and signs will guide you to the Parent Pick Up Area.

Parents or guardians are requested to remain on premises to assume responsibility for the safety of their child following the judging period.

During Public Viewing of the inventions in the exhibit hall, parents should be aware of their children at all times. Safety is foremost.

Winners will be notified in the early afternoon by the placement of ribbons on the student’s exhibit. Please note, first, second, and third place plus special merit awards will be publicly announced during the awards program. All participants and their families are invited and encouraged to attend the Regional Awards Program, the time and place to be announced.

Finally, your child will need your permission to participate in the regional and nationally sponsored competitions. The potential for media coverage is significant. Your child may appear in news reports, special event stories or in film footage to be utilized for educational or promotional activities.

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