Physical Science-Rube Goldberg Project

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This project is suitable for Pre-AP Physical Science classes as well as upper level Physics courses in high school (Grades 9-12). If planning to use this project for grades below 9th grade, it might be best if a majority of the students involved have completed Algebra 1.

The project will not only meet any number of your state science standards but also meet Next Generation Science Standards HS-PS2-1 and HS-PS3-3 and others.

The project is designed to be done by the students (groups of 2-3 students) at home over several weeks using ordinary objects found around any household. Because of the technical nature of this project, the several weeks of work time is broken into at least three windows of effort. The teacher will of course have to plan well in advance of the start date, insure the students are proficient at the various calculations and science concepts they will need to explain, and also introduce them to the online video sharing service BURST.com.

BURST.com has a FREE online site for BASIC membership. In addition, they have an APP available for Android and Apple devices that allows the students to record a video directly into their device via the app (or transfer from the device’s camera roll) and immediately send it to the teacher via the email address provided by the teacher. A very cool function the BURST team designed into the app is a “comment” capability that works almost like an internal texting/email that allows the teacher to quickly view and comment on the video component submitted by the students. NO, I have no connection whatsoever to the Burst.com organization. I just think it’s a cool app and because it’s private, there’s no need for parent permissions or exchanging of student emails with the teacher and requires no special software to convert files. The only email that gets exchanged is the one the teacher provides to the students as the point of contact which should probably be your official school email.

Included in this group of files is the set of instructions provided to each student group and which can posted online for student and parent reference. All of the videos linked to the set of instructions are pulled directly from public access YouTube.com and are not my students but simply examples used to get your students thinking. The last page of the instructions includes a scoring rubric if you choose to use it.

I have used this project for a few years and been pleased with the student effort and performance as well as receiving nothing but positive parental feedback. If you decide to purchase this project you won’t be disappointed.
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Physical Science-Rube Goldberg Project
Physical Science-Rube Goldberg Project