This collection contains nine 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

*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

*High flyers: building a glider with everyday materials

*Super sucker: designing a machine to clean up litter

* Cosy toes: winter-proof a pair of shoes

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



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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...

Music to the Ears: Designing and Creating a Sound Generator

Aimed at primary level, this resource provides a cross-curricular design and technology project linked to the topic of sound. Children design and make their own simple stringed instrument, so they can make a soundtrack for a movie clip. This enables them to learn and experience properties of sound and discover more...

Knee Deep: Designing and Constructing a Water Pond

Aimed at primary level, this resource provides a design and technology project which links to work on the properties of materials and aspects of environmental geography. Children design and make a model of a pond and discover more about the work of engineers throughout the process. In the first lesson the context...

Huff and Puff: Designing a Device for Measuring Exhalation Volume

This resource provides a cross-curricular design and technology project which links to work on the lungs and respiration. Children design and make a device to measure maximal exhalation volume. They also discover more about the work of biomedical engineers throughout the process. This resource was designed for use...


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