Make Your Own Buzzing Board Game

Make a personalized version of the board game Operation, where players must remove game pieces without setting off the alarm!

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Here's your chance to re-invent the board game Operation, where players must remove game pieces without setting off the alarm. You'll learn about electronics and game design as you take the idea behind the buzzing board and make it your own.

You choose the theme, design the board, and build the electric circuit that makes it work. All you need is a recycled box (such as a cereal or cracker box) and some simple components.

What will you create? Turn your buzzing, light-up game board into an adventure story, an anatomy lesson, or a test of skill — whatever sparks your imagination!

DIY Operation Game

Buzzing board games

Age Range


Class Meeting Information


Tuesday, Feburary 22, 2022 at 3pm ET

Supply List

To work along with the online workshop, have these materials ready. Don't hesitate to contact me if you have questions about supplies!

Electronics and Special Materials:

Note: If you got a kit from Kathy, it contains all the electronics and special materials

Other kits that will work with this class:

Need last-minute supplies? LEDs can be salvaged from light strands, tea lights, or old toys or devices. You may be able to find a small vibrating motor in an old disposable toothbrush or pager. My tutorial will show you how:

To strip a wire: Use a wire stripper tool like this to cut through the plastic insulation, no more than 1/2 inch from the end, and pull it off the metal wire inside. If you don’t have the tool, carefully pinch all the way around the insulation with regular scissors or small nail clippers. Bend the wire back and forth until the insulation separates and you can slide it off the end.

Shopping Lists with Links:

Crafts supplies and recycled materials:

  • thin, smooth-sided cardboard box (such as a small or medium-sized cereal or cracker box)
  • metal tweezers (look in the dollar store, or make your own by bending a thin strip of cardboard in half and cover with foil)
  • tape (any household tape)
  • (optional) double-sided tape (such as thin scrapbooking tape)
  • heavy paper, such as construction paper or cardstock
  • markers or other drawing tools
  • aluminum foil (regular kitchen foil is fine)
  • something to make game pieces: scrap cardboard, clay, beads, buttons, etc
  • (optional) small binder clip


  • scissors and/or craft knife

Class Interaction: 

Live sessions work best with a camera and microphone. Parents will need a Zoom account (free).

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