Mrs. Meyer’s fourth grade science class has been learning about the engineering and design process. In order to better understand it, the student’s performed an experiment. The students were given the task of building a model for astronauts to use in outer space to eat m & m’s without them floating around everywhere due to zero gravity.
After watching a video of astronauts eating in space, the students had to follow the six steps in the design process to build their model which were: identify the problem, identify criteria and constraints, brainstorm possible solutions, select an approach, build a model/prototype and then refine the design.
The students were provided with a sandwich size Ziploc bag, two pieces of aluminum foil, one sheet of cardstock, one sheet of computer paper, and masking tape to build their models with. Before they could start though, they each had to sketch out what they wanted their model to look like.
Once the student’s had their model ready to go, Mrs. Meyer gave each student a pack of m & m’s to try it out with. They each tried it once and then were given the opportunity to revise or make any changes if they wanted to.
The students really enjoyed this hands-on experiment and learning about the design process. Mrs. Meyer is proud of them and how creative they were!