Many years ago, we bought this little wooden toy, in Germany. I remember drawing and animating it in ProDesktop. I have now managed it with Creo2.0.
I am very happy with the results. Part files are uploaded if you want to have a play with it.
I love this toy and the Creo animation Peter has created is very cool.
If your students are looking for ideas for Automata take a look at the Flying Pig web site. My own favourite is the "Ewe Boat"! http://www.flying-pig.co.uk/