Ancient Civilization STEM & STEAM Challenges Bundle!
Cross-curricular challenges for students who are studying Ancient Civilizations!
This resource is part of the Ancient Civilizations Curriculum Bundle
These resources have science, technology, engineering, and measurement activities to do with your upper elementary kids that will really enhance their learning!
Watch a video of the challenges in action here!
This bundle contains 7 StudentSavvy STEM Resources! Ancient Mesopotamia, Ancient Egypt, Ancient Israel, Ancient India, Ancient China, Ancient Greece, and Ancient Rome STEM Challenges!
There are 13 STEM Challenges in this pack.
Each STEM Challenge has detailed directions, photo examples, a list of materials needed, prediction section, brainstorming section, trials 1, 2, & 3, final results section with drawings, and a reflection section.
The STEM Challenges include:
Ancient Mesopotamia STEM Challenges
-Ziggurat Marble Run Challenge
Using a list of supplies, students must design a Ziggurat structure that contains a marble run track. The goal of the stem challenge is to create a design that has the longest properly-functioning marble run track. The marble run can travel up, down, around, or inside the Ziggurat structure. The marble must be dropped at the top of the Ziggurat and after completing it’s course it must end at the bottom of the structure. After completing the projects, the students will measure their marble run with a ruler. (more instructions are given in the resource)
-Cuneiform Coding Challenge
Students must decide on symbols that represent each letter of the alphabet. They must create an answer key of their symbols that correlate with the letters A-Z. Using a sharp pencil as a stylus, students will carve their symbols into their tablet, creating a coded message. The message must be a fact about Ancient Mesopotamia and it must contain at least 5 words. When multiple groups are finished, they will give the Cuneiform tablets to each other and try to guess what the other group’s message is. (more instructions are given in the resource)
Ancient Egypt STEM Challenges
-Mummified Apples in Caponic Jars Challenge!
Using a list of supplies, students must first design four canopic jars.
Using 4 slices of apple, students must test different mixtures using salt, baking soda, vinegar, and sugar. Out of the 4 slices, they must have a control group (no ingredients used on the apple) to measure the mummification process. They need to write down the exact measurements for each mixture using a page found in the resource. Each Canopic Jar needs to be labeled with the mixture. After applying the mixtures to the apples, they are placed inside the sealed jars. For the next four days, students must record their observations during the mummification process. ***More instructions are found in the resource
-Toothpick Pyramid Challenge
Using a list of supplies, students must design either a freestanding square or rectangular pyramid. The goal of the challenge is to design the tallest pyramid in the shortest amount of time. If glue is used instead of non-drying clay or marshmallows, allow for drying time. Students only need to use the timer during building time. They can stop the clock while their pyramid dries. The group who can build the tallest pyramid in the shortest amount of time wins the challenge. ***More instructions are found in the resource
Ancient Israel STEM Challenges
Using a list of supplies, students must engineer a model of Masada. Their model must contain the Western and Eastern Palaces. They can be as creative as they would like in their design, but it must have three levels. After creating their model, they must use wood blocks to built the tallest rock cliff that can support their Masada model. The group with the tallest rock cliff wins! Students will have three attempts to create the tallest rock cliff structure. (***more instructions are given in the resource)
Ancient India STEM Challenges
-Ancient Irrigation System Challenge!
Because of monsoons in the Indus Valley Civilization, the ancient people of India had to figure out a way to save the water for the remainder of the year for their crops. In this challenge, students must design a model of an ancient irrigation system by selecting one (using a page in the resource). They must use their knowledge of simple machines by incorporating either a lever or pulley system in their design. The water must successfully be moved from one bin to another, the second bin representing the plants that need to be watered. The group that can create a system that moves the most water (without large amounts of spilling or wasting water) in the shortest amount of time wins the challenge. ******More instructions are found in the resource
-Protect the Stupa from a Monsoon Challenge!
Students must protect a stupa from flooding due to a monsoon. Materials must be added around the fence to protect water from entering the stupa. Water must be poured around the fence of their design, the water height must be at least a third of the height of their stupa. (For example, if the stupa is 12 inches tall, the water height must be 4 inches in their container. Students must brainstorm which materials would stop the water from getting past the fence for a full 2 minutes. ******More instructions are found in the resource
Ancient China STEM Challenges
-The Great Wall of China Zipline!
Using a list of supplies, students must engineer a model of the Great Wall of China. The list of supplies are not required in this challenge, they are just suggestions on what they can use. Their wall must have at least two guard towers. On top of the guard towers, there must be a zipline apparatus where an object can travel from one tower to the next by using a pulley that attaches to a string. ******More instructions are found in the resource
-Ancient Instruments: Erhu and Ruan Challenge!
Using a list of supplies and an information page, students must design either an erhu or ruan instrument. The instrument must be able to produce sound and the strings must produce a variety of pitches. ******More instructions are found in the resource
Ancient Greece STEM Challenges
Using a list of supplies, students must engineer a model of a chariot. The chariot must have functioning wheels where the contraption can be pulled around while the wheels spin. They have one hour to complete this challenge. ******Information page and more instructions are found in the resource
Students must design a catapult. Students can to decide to create a cross-bow style catapult or a stone-hurling catapult. The catapult must be able to launch or shoot an object into the air. The group that can create the most effective catapult (shoots the furthest) wins the challenge! Students can only use the items listed below. They have one hour to complete this challenge. ******Information page and more instructions are found in the resource
Ancient Rome STEM Challenges
-Roman Aqueduct Challenge!
Using a list of supplies, students must create an aqueduct that can transport water from one location to another. The goal of this challenge is to design an aqueduct that can transmit water from a source to at least three different locations (separate containers of water). The design must not have any leaks. Using a water can, students can test their model by pouring water from the starting point of their aqueduct and allowing it to travel to the three containers without any spilling.
******Information page and more instructions are found in the resource
-Roman Roads Maze Run!
Using a list of supplies, students must design a shoe-box marble maze that is inspired from the roads that the Romans engineered. The design must contain at least 6 tunnels and a bridge. There must be a beginning and an end point of the maze. When they groups are finished, they can challenge other groups to test out their design.
******Information page and more instructions are found in the resource
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