No More “Leap Into Ham Radio”

Leap Into Amateur RadioFor at least the last five years, the ARRL has produced a brochure aimed at kids called “Leap Into Amateur Radio.” I don’t know that the frog theme is all that great, but it’s simple and direct and colorful. We’ve passed out hundreds at Field Day and down at our club station at the Hands-On Museum.

Last week, I tried to order a new supply, but when I went to the ARRL website, there was a message, “No items available.” I contacted the sales department, as to when they might be available again, and was told, “The LEAP brochures are in the process of being updated and we do not have a set date as to when they will be ready.” “Great,” I thought, “just in time for Field Day, there will be no literature to hand out to kids.”

Then, I got to thinking that this may be an opportunity to improve on the brochure. Or, come up with something other than a brochure that kids would remember as much or more. Some of the ideas that came to mind, include:

  • a “QSL card” with information about ham radio,
  • a handout with some kind of game with a ham radio theme that kids could play
  • a handout that kids could cut and paste into a paper “ham radio,”

What do you think? Anyone else have other ideas?



  1. Have you ever looked at the comic books that ICOM has created for recruiting youth?

  2. Jim Brooks says:

    I was ordering brochures a few days ago and saw the same thing on the ARRL website. I think your ideas are excellent; I like the colorful “Leap” brochure, but it had nothing to engage kids. It would be simple to add a seek-and-find word game, puzzle, or other activity on the back. If you want to get kids’ attention, you have to engage them with something besides a brochure.

    I’ll be interested to see what they come up with; I hope you’ve forwarded your input to HQ!


    Jim KY4Z

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      Hi, Jim–

      To be honest, I’ve pretty much given up on ARRL HQ. Aside from perhaps the public relations director, none of the other staff has shown any real interest in listening to members or soliciting their help. Now, it may just be that my ideas are not all that good, but I’ve heard from others that they’ve pretty much gotten the same reception. Namely that if someone at HQ didn’t think it up, it’s not worth considering. Instead, I’m just going to plow along on my own, and make whatever I come up with available to everyone else in the amateur radio community, just as I have with “A Parent’s Guide to Amateur Radio.”

      I did e-mail the museum’s executive director about this idea, and he’s said that I could have up to six hours of his graphic designer’s time. They really know what they’re doing as far as designing things for kids, so I’m planning to meet with him soon and see what we both can come up with.

  3. Gary KB8MYC says:

    I echo Ray’s comment. I was successful in getting a supply of these from ICOM at Dayton last year (they shipped them to me). I made packets with them, along with some stuff for the parents and had them at field day and similar events.

  4. Our local club has the series of comics from Icom and kids really seem to enjoy them. My 10 year old daughter has her Tech license and was thrilled to take all 20 of her classmates the whole series.

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