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Flying T-Shirt Challenge

Astros mascot shooting t-shirtsStudents follow the engineering design process to design and build a usable device to propel school T-shirts up into the stands during home sporting events while keeping costs under budget.

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Activity: Robot Basketball

basketball robotIn this activity, students in grades 5 to 12 learn about accuracy, precision, and simple machines by working in teams to design and build a robotic basketball “player” that can nail a free-throw shot three times in a row.

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Lesson: Target Practice – Pumpkin Launcher

target practiceStudents in grades 1 to 6 follow the engineering design process to build and test a catapult that launches projectiles, such as marshmallow “pumpkins.” They then make changes to improve their launcher’s aim and distance it can hurl the projectile.

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Hands-on Hits of 2011

activitiesYou don’t have to be an engineer to introduce engineering concepts and design into your classroom. The eGFI site includes scores of inexpensive, engaging lessons – searchable by grade level or subject – that cover the various engineering disciplines. To kick off the school year and acquaint you with eGFI, we’ve assembled a dozen of 2011’s most popular lessons and activities. Have fun putting some “E” in your STEM classes this semester!

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Activity: Catapult Marshmallow Launch

MashmallowsThis simple catapult activity for students in grades 4 – 8 teaches them how energy is transferred when a plastic spoon is pulled back, then released, rocketing its payload — a single marshmallow.

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Lesson: Build a Catapult

CatapultIn this lesson, students in grades 4-12 learn about the history of catapults and how they work. They assemble their own catapult model, making adjustments to improve its performance. Students gain engineering experience while learning principles of physics and working with the scientific processes of experimentation and trial and error.

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