build a boat

Everything in the built world has a story as well as a lot of ideas, thinking, experiences and background knowledge. Take for example, the Optimist sailboat. The design is simple enough that many people and groups have build them so kids everywhere can learn to sail in a small rugged boat and compete internationally. These are the instructions for building an Opti complete with pictures and links to resources. Going through the instructions points out a number of engineering concepts and terminology as well as tools and skills. Computer-aided design – Wikipedia Computer-aided design (CAD) is the use of computers … Continue reading build a boat

paper airplanes

Paper planes are great projects. There are 1000s of designs, each with different flight characteristics. Some require cutting, others are made by folding only. Dihedral provides aerodynamic stability to your models by making them want to self-center during flight. Paper airplanes have no intelligent flight controls after they leave your hand, so the plane needs to be naturally stable or else it will crash. Designs perform better when some dihedral is added to the wings. Elevator is the aeronautical term for the hinged flap at the tail section of a plane that causes it to either climb (gain altitude) or … Continue reading paper airplanes

Tippy Tap Hand Washer In this service-learning activity, student teams will learn the basic principles of fluid dynamics as well as how engineers improve society by designing a prototype system to pipe water from a storage tank to a simple hand-washing station called a Tippy Tap. These inexpensive, homemade devices are used extensively in the developing world, but because they must be manually refilled with water, they are of limited use in high-traffic areas. 2019.4.2 The students brainstormed, chose their first engineering design project and completed the pre-requisites on the engineering design process for the Tippy Tap Hand-Washer. Students have purposed that this … Continue reading Tippy Tap Hand Washer

Engineering is…

Engineering is … making things and making things better Through That’s Engineering series of stories, explore the ideas and activities that engineers use, learn about the Engineering Design Process and solve real problems working with others in person and online. Stories are online resources, videos, puzzles, and real world problems. Explore and think about the challenge questions. Do some investigation. Then share your ideas, resources and questions in the online conversations as comments, blog posts, even podcast or movies. So come along and join in. Start where ever you like. Read the story. Check out the resources we found. Think … Continue reading Engineering is…

roller coaster

Roller Coaster – an amusement ride developed for amusement parks. A specialized railroad system, a roller coaster consists of a track that rises in designed patterns, sometimes with one or more loops that briefly turn the rider upside down. Most roller coasters have multiple cars in which passengers sit and are restrained. The earliest amusement parks and roller coasters in the United States were built on Coney Island in New York during the late 1800s and early 1900s. More than 30 roller coasters were built on the island from 1884 through the 1930s. Built in 1927, the Cyclone Roller Coaster, … Continue reading roller coaster

penny bridge

Penny Bridge – Make a bridge and see how many pennies it will support. Supplies 4 to 6 books (enough to make 2 stacks the same height) 5X8 index cards 10 -20 pennies for each team Scissors 1. Take an index card, gently bend the card so that it has a curve. Position the cardboard on a table so that it resembles an arch. Press down on the center of the arch. What happens to the ends of the cardboard? 2. Make 2 stacks of books with a gap of about 4 inches between them. Make sure the stacks are … Continue reading penny bridge