Are you ready for Engineers Week?
Engineering is one of the 5 steps in the Discover Primary Science Awards this year.
These ideas might come in handy in your classroom.
In the Senior Classes I think they would benefit more from a challenge approach rather than experiments facilitated by and guided by the teacher.
Last year I gave each group an empty 2 litre milk carton, wooden skewers, plastic spools (borrowed from infants), yogurt pots, string, tape, a pin wheel template and a lego man. Their challenge was to build a machine that would lift the lego man up.
The aim was to build a wind powered machine, while I didn’t tell them this at the start. It was interesting to see the different designs and how the groups worked together. In Senior Classes it is important to encourage critical thinking and problem solving through activities such as this.
(Credit to Una Leader of Old Waterworks in Cork for this idea, I did it during a Summer Course.)
Another interesting activity to link with Maths which I did recently at the PDST Shape and Space Course was to give the children polygons and ask them to make a net of a cube. Then ask the children to explore the many ways you could make the net of a cube rather than the standard T-shape. It is a very nice activity to link your Maths to Engineers Week.
If you don’t mind the children getting a little sticky, you could also explore 3D shapes using marshmallows and cocktails sticks or kebab sticks. Set the class a challenge to build a tall tower using the marshmallows and cocktail sticks too.
When you think of engineering you think of buildings and machines, to link Engineers Week to English you could discuss all the different types of Engineers and perhaps choose one to focus on each day.
Civil Engineers design structures used in buildings, roads or to carry a water supply.
To explore Civil Engineering you could use a marble run to design a water supply, you could also explore bridges such as this experiment by Primary Science.
There are lots of ideas to link with Electrical Engineers, making circuits or develop the lesson to make a light house. Check out my Mash.ie store for electricity cards and engineers week cards to print and use in your class.
This year I have got the opportunity to participate in I’m an Engineer get me out of here. We are participating in the Health Section. I have never participated in it before so I am looking forward to exploring it with my class.
Have a great week,share your ideas on my page.