Midway through the week three, the students were given a design challenge Their challenge was to design and create a catapult that would shoot a projectile (rolled up pipe cleaner) the farthest. They were able to use the laser cutter or 3D printer to make their catapult. They also were put in random groups of 2...which meant that there would be some coed groups. This would be the first time boys and girls would be working together on a project.
The material list (for the final version) included a piece of wood that is 8"x12", glue, and 2 rubber bands. They first researched catapults, then draw a design. The design had to be approved before they could start designing on the computer. Their initial design was made into a cardboard prototype for testing. After testing, groups made improvements and recut prototypes. Once everything works, they made their next version out of wood. Following tests of the wood catapults, groups made additional changes to make their design before the official competition to see which catapult could shot the farthest. This challenge took about 5 days to complete but lots of learning happened.
Before our next design challenge, we took time for free making again. Here are some of the things our students made during this time.
Our final design challenge during week four was an individual build...each person had to make a marble maze. The students could use the laser cutter or the 3D printer...they all choose the laser cutter. The mazes had certain criteria they had to meet so with all questions answered, off the makers went. First they researched what other mazes looked liked. Then they came up with possible designs and had to create a written plan for the one they wanted to make. After the design was approved, they began making. After a number of revisions and prototypes, here are some of the final products.