This 6 page building structures project adheres to the Ontario curriculum standards for Grade 7 Science, more specifically 'Form and Function" under "Understanding Structures and Mechanisms." This is excellent project to complete at the end of this unit.
In this activity, students will design and build a structure that shows the knowledge they've gained so far. Through their material choices and design, students will demonstrate their knowledge of form/shapes, centre of gravity, and external/ internal forces. To further create a challenge, students will also have to consider how their design will hold/cradle various objects that will be placed on top.
This project outline is formatted as follows:
Page 1: clear, concise introduction to the project; structure requirements stated (i.e. what the minimum height must be, what materials can/can't be used); student selection of whether they will do the project alone, in partners, or in a group (space available to list down names).
Pages 2, 4, 5 - these pages consist of the written portion of the building assignment; in this write-up section, students will answer regarding their structures, such as what materials were used, what design they chose (use of certain shapes, mechanisms, buttresses, creating strength and stability); students will also be asked to discuss the forces and loads affecting their structure; lastly, students will have an opportunity to reflect on what they could have improved on
Page 3 - students will provide a large sketch of their structure that clearly shows all of the parts and details; here, students will also be asked to specifically label certain key aspects of their structures (e.g. label buttresses, if used)
Page 6 - detailed rubric that incorporates all four areas (knowledge/understanding, thinking, communication and application); easy to use, both for teachers when marking and students reading to understand the mark given
Since it is in Word doc format, you can easily add, remove, and/or modify any aspect of this project. This product can also be modified to suit the various needs (e.g. IEP modifications, accommodations, etc.) of your students.