Early Childhood STEM Enrichment Program: Week 3

Week 3: Paper Structures Part 1

Objective: Students will work in teams of 3 to design and build a structure from the provided materials, and then test it to hold weight.

This week the students would have to work collaboratively in teams of 3 in order to design and build a structure that could hold weight. We began the lesson with a PowerPoint presentation that discussed the following information:
  • What are some structures we remember seeing from Week 1?
  • What shapes do we see most often in structures?
  • Samples of different structures from Week 1.
  • Different materials used to build a structure and why?
  • Video from YouTube: Conducting test of strength of weak materials using different 3D shapes.
  • Directions and materials for the activity (similar to the page below for the portfolio).
Since this was a 2 part activity/lesson, next week we will finish constructing our structures, test them with weight, and then do a Unit feedback relating to everything we did in Engineering.

Here was the pre-activity sheet that the students did, as well as their individual activity sheets with self assessment answers. During Part 1 of this activity

Working in teams the students viewed the materials and began building their structures. This was a little more challenging as I asked each team to keep track of how many of each material they used, which focused them really well on how much they were actually using. Unlike some of the other Engineering activities we have done in this program, they had no material restrictions and could use as much as they wanted, as long as they kept track of it all.

With the last 5 minutes of the lesson, the students drew a picture of their structure and labeled the different materials they had used.

Next week we will finish building our structures, test them with weight, and give feedback on the Engineer Unit!


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