ENGINEER

This collection contains ten activities which support science learning within the context of a wide range of engineering design challenges. Designed to foster questioning and creativity and to develop problem-solving skills including testing alternative options, interpreting results and evaluating their solutions. Tasks and challenges have been designed to be as open-ended as possible, and to avoid ‘right answers’; in particular, aiming to avoid competition which may alienate some students, while retaining the motivation of wanting to solve a problem. An important goal of all of the units is to maximise opportunities for group work and to support students in learning to work together and communicate their ideas effectively.

The activities are:

*Life support: direct water flow to plants

*Suck it up: designing a contraption that sucks up debris

*Music to the ears: designing and creating a sound generator

*Knee deep: designing and constructing a water pond

*Huff and puff: designing a device for measuring exhalation volume 

*High and dry: protecting objects on a floating platform

*A fine balance: building a hanging sculpture

*Popular mechanics: becoming a designer of machines

*Frisky feet: winter-proof a pair of shoes

*High flyers: building a glider with everyday materials

These resources were produced under the funding of the 7th framework programme, as part of ENGINEER project, contract No. 288989. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Resources

Life Support: Direct Water Flow to Plants

This resource provides a cross curricular design and technology project for primary children, which looks at what plants need to grow and on water transport in plants. The context is provided by a story about a boy who moves to another planet to build a settlement there. The problem is to design a way of...
Publication date:
2010 to date

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Cosy Toes: Winter-Proof a Pair of Shoes

This resource provides a cross-curricular design and technology and science project aimed at primary children. Using the context of the school class going to Greenland and forgetting all their shoes, children are asked to construct shoe soles that will insulate them as they take part in a dog-sled trip. Children...
Publication date:
2010 to date

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Popular Mechanics: Becoming a Designer of Machines

This resource aimed at upper primary contains a series of lessons which look at the means by which machines (cams, levers, gears and pulleys) transform force into movement. The first lesson provides the context for the project in the form of a story, where students are asked to create a counter to count visitors to a...
Publication date:
2010 to date

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A Fine Balance: Building a Hanging Sculpture

This resource provides a cross-curricular design and technology project aimed at primary children. Linking to work on the forces and balance children build and test sculptures in small groups. They also discover more about the work of mechanical engineers throughout the lessons. The first lesson introduces the...
Publication date:
2010 to date

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