Monday, February 25, 2008

a weekend project to work on with one of your students

(I've been finding/hearing about a good number of fun Twitter apps and stuff lately and will most likely put a lot of them together in one post. But this one deserves a post of its own)

Are you looking for a good project to work on with one of the students in your ministry? Are you looking for something that will waste a lot of your time? If so, keep reading.

I don't do well with plants. I do not have a green thumb. In fact, we do not have any plants in our house right now, nor do we have any outside. Even with my shortcomings when it comes to keeping plants alive, I doubt I would go to this trouble. has a DIY for getting your plant to send you a tweet on Twitter when it needs water and a thanks when you water it. Wow, it seems like a lot more work than just checking the soil every day or so with your finger. Here is a list of the stuff you need to do this:

1) awesome plant


(1) 2N2222A or 2N3904 transistor
(1) 100 ohm resistor

(1) 10K Ohm resistor

(1) LED

(2) galvanized nails, preferably hot dipped

(1) small breadboard

(1) Adafruit Xport shield

(1) XPort or Xport Direct

(1) Arduino USB board

(1) 9V DC power adapter

hook up wire in assorted colors


USB A to B cable

USB A to miniB cable

USB Serial FTDI adapter (optional)

Ethernet cable


soldering iron

helping hands

computer with ZTerm or HyperTerminal, Arduino
Twitter account
Here is a picture of the final product. And remember if you have a few extra hours to waste this weekend, you'll want to try this DIY. Oh, and for those in youth ministry, don't forget to call one of your students to help you with this project (now that would be a memory they would never forget)

Or, if you don't want to go to all this trouble, here are a few other suggestions. Send yourself a weekly email to check your plants (via Or write a note. You could even just make sure each Monday you check your plants (add it to your todo list). But then again, I could just be too old-fashioned and reluctant to use technology to its fullest.

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