STEM Model-Eliciting Activities
Creating a Trap
Understanding Chemical Reactions
Building a House
Building a Tower
Students will focus on creating a trap for a Gingerbread Man. Students will use various supplies, and create a device that will catch the Gingerbread Man overnight.
Students will put effervescent tablets inside a film canister with a little bit of water. As gas is produced, pressure will build in the film canister causing the cap to pop off. Students will color and tape a creature of their choice to the bottom of the film canister and see how high it can go. The students can experiment with the amount of tablet and water to see what works best. This is an introduction to the STEM engineering design, build and modify process.
Students will be challenged to build a house that the big, bad wolf cannot blow down (i.e., the box fan). The engineering design process is introduced and teams are given a set amount of time to build their houses. Then, testing of the houses in front of a box fan is done in front of the whole group and results are recorded to determine which materials and designs worked best.
Students will use two materials provided to build the tallest tower possible. The constraints of the task makes this challenging for students. With very little instruction kids will get right to work trying to determine a way to follow the task rules and create the tallest structure.
Designing a Tower
Designing a Parachute
Students will collaborate in a design exercise that encourages teams to experience simple but profound lessons in collaboration, innovation and creativity. It is designed to reinforce the engineering model of design, build and modify.
Students will work in groups to create a parachute. They will modify their parachute in order to produce the safest landing possible. Kids will have a great time creating and demonstrating their designs, while learning about wind resistance, surface area, friction and gravity.