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How can the EDP or engineering design practices be incorporated into this activity?

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  1. Ms. Burn's 4th grade class, Healey school, Spring 2013

    We did this activity as a short introduction to get the students re-acquainted with STOMP. We first reviewed why engineering is important and discussed some engineering design process concepts (ie. planning, trial-and-error, redesign).The students worked in partners and overall, the activity went well. 

    However, we made the mistake of giving them an example of how they can approach the problem. We asked them to think about the difference between a flat paper vs. a paper that was folded. Though this gave the students a starting point, almost all the groups ended up folding their papers to create their bridges. We realized that we might have limited the students' creativity by giving them a hint that they all ended up following. 

    We had each group test their bridges between two stools and using books found in their classroom. We also asked them to think about the problems they saw in their earlier design and to think about ways in which they can improve their designs and also the designs of others.