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Catapult Challenge
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This is a really fun and informative lesson that I do with my high school Programming/technology class to break up the monotony of beginner programming. However; this lesson can be used and applied in essentially any class and for many purposes, and to address many areas. One of the other really nice things about this lesson is that it can be extended to hit many points including physics, math, and advanced engineering.

Throughout the building period, I would present teams with a challenge (puzzle, build, etc…) and the first team to complete it would get a prize. It could be more modification time, extra materials, etc…)

The materials (including hot glue guns) can be purchased at Wal Mart or a similar store for around $20-25, if ordering through your district isn’t an option. With those purchases, it gives you a lot more materials than needed which can be used for additional similar projects.

Subject:
Engineering
Education
Mathematics
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Author:
Timothy Barnes
Date Added:
12/05/2018
Catapults!
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Educational Use
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Students observe the relationship between the angle of a catapult (a force measurement) and the flight of a cotton ball. They learn how Newton's second law of motion works by seeing directly that F = ma. When they pull the metal "arm" back further, thus applying a greater force to the cotton ball, it causes the cotton ball to travel faster and farther. Students also learn that objects of greater mass require more force to result in the same distance traveled by a lighter object.

Subject:
Engineering
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Ben Heavner
Denise Carlson
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Sabre Duren
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Flying T-Shirts
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Educational Use
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During this engineering design/build project, students investigate many different solutions to a problem. Their design challenge is to find a way to get school t-shirts up into the stands during home sporting events. They follow the steps of the engineering design process to design and build a usable model, all while keeping costs under budget.

Subject:
Engineering
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Brandi Jackson
Denise W. Carlson
Jonathan MacNeil
Scott Duckworth
Stephanie Rivale
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Launch into Learning: Catapults!
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Educational Use
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Students learn about catapults, including the science and math concepts behind them, as they prepare for the associated activity in which they design, build and test their own catapults. They learn about force, accuracy, precision and angles.

Subject:
Engineering
Physics
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Carleigh Samson
Jake Crosby
Jonathan McNeil
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
William Surles
Date Added:
09/18/2014
The Magician's Catapult
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Educational Use
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In this activity, students reinforce their understanding of compound machines by building a catapult. This compound machine consists of a lever and a wheel-and-axel. Catapults have been designed by engineers for a variety of purposes from lifting boulders into the air for warfare to human beings for entertainment; the projectiles in this activity are grapes for a magic act. Given the building materials, students design and build their catapult to launch a grape a certain distance.

Subject:
Engineering
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
Michael J. Bendewald
Date Added:
10/14/2015
Physics of the Flying T-Shirt
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Educational Use
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Students are introduced to the physics concepts of air resistance and launch angle as they apply to catapults. This includes the basic concepts of position, velocity and acceleration and their relationships to one another. They use algebra to solve for one variable given two variables.

Subject:
Engineering
Physics
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Brandi Jackson
Denise W. Carlson
Jonathan MacNeil
Scott Duckworth
Stephanie Rivale
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Right on Target: Catapult Game
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Educational Use
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Students experience the engineering design process as they design and build accurate and precise catapults using common materials. They use their catapults to participate in a game in which they launch Ping-Pong balls to attempt to hit various targets.

Subject:
Engineering
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Carleigh Samson
Jake Crosby
Jonathan McNeil
Malinda Schaefer Zarske
William Surles
Date Added:
09/18/2014
Trebuchet Design & Build Challenge
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Educational Use
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In this activity, students explore how trebuchets were used during the Middle Ages to launch projectiles over or through castle walls as well as how they are used today in events such as Punkin’ Chunkin’. Students work as teams of engineers and research how to design and build their own trebuchets from scratch while following a select number of constraints. They test their trebuchets, evaluate their results through several quantitative analyses, and present their results and design process to the class.

Subject:
Engineering
Algebra
Measurement and Data
Physics
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
Activities
Author:
Kimberly Collins
Date Added:
06/13/2019
Trebuchet Launch
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Educational Use
Rating

Students work as engineers to design and test trebuchets (in this case LEGO® MINDSTORMS® robots) that can launch objects. During the testing stage, they change one variable at a time to study its effect on the outcome of their designs. Specifically, they determine how far objects travel depending on their weights. As students learn about the different components of robot design and the specific function controls, they determine what design features are important for launching objects.

Subject:
Architecture and Design
Engineering
Material Type:
Activity/Lab
Provider:
TeachEngineering
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering
Author:
Janet Yowell
Jennifer S. Haghpanah
Date Added:
09/18/2014