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Welcome to Mr. Liacos' and Ms. Person's Wiki Page!

Fall 2012 

Fellows: Kaitlyn Davis & Tucker Stone (R. Liacos) and Kenneth Westerman & Matthew Mueller (A. Person)

STOMP Testing Curriculum: Semester Outline

Activities

Week 1: Egg Drop

  • Ask students to create a protective device for a hard boiled egg using cotton balls, coffee
    straws, rubber bands, index cards, and tape, so that the egg would not crack if dropped.
  • Allow students to present their designs in front of the class and discuss why they felt
    their design would succeed.
  • Test eggs.
  • COMMENTS: Students had lots of fun with this activity, and we felt it was a great way to 
    start off the semester and the testing unit. The presentations were a great component
    of this activity because students could see the wide variety of designs that came
    from the same materials.

Week 2: Introduction to Testing

  • Use flashlights to compare products and identify the desirable qualities of each flashlight.
  • Ask students, as a class, to identify desirable qualities of a car.
  • Introduce pre-made lego cars and allow students to create their own tests for the cars, to 
    decide which car is "best".
  • Discuss as a class.
  • COMMENTS: This has been our least successful activity so far. The students were not
    actively engaged in the lego car portion of the lesson, perhaps because there were only 
    four cars for the entire class. We divided the class in half and provided each half of the
    class with two cars to test and compare. Because there were so many students in each 
    group, it seemed that a few students were involved and the rest were taking a less active
    role and just observing. It also got a bit chaotic.
    In the future, it may be better to have more cars to test, so that the groups can be smaller
    and every student can be involved.

Week 3: Using Testing to Support Design

  • Ask students to recall important qualities in a car that were listed last week (i.e. speed,
    safety, gas mileage, etc.)
  • Divide students into groups of four and ask them to design and create a lego car that
    satisfies at least one of these criteria. 
  • Encourage students to test and redesign their car throughout the lesson.
  • Allow students to present their cars and discuss how their design satisfied the criteria
    that they chose, and what could be improved in their design.
  • COMMENTS: Students successfully built cars, but were not very inclined to test their
    cars or seemed still unsure of how to test their cars (perhaps from the less successful 
    lesson beforehand). 

Week 4: Candy Corn Catapults (not from testing curriculum)

  • Divide students into groups of three or four.
  • Ask students to use legos, three rubber bands, and a plastic spoon to create a catapult
    capable of flinging candy corn a certain distance and with accuracy.
  • Half way through the lesson, begin allowing students to test their designs with
    a previously created "target", from a set distance. We used half of the length of the 
    classroom and a target size roughly 2' by 2', with a smaller target at the center of roughly
    4" by 4".
  • Encourage students to redesign if their catapult does not initially work.
  • COMMENTS: Students enjoyed this activity, but only one group was able to make it
    on the target by the end of the lesson. Providing students with more of a variety of
    materials would be interesting.

Spring 2012 - with Anna Person

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