Climbing over rope walls, crawling through the mud, and jumping over burning flames. These are just some of the obstacles people faces when they sign up for races. These days, people don’t just want to run a 5K or go for a jog, they want to blast through an obstacle race course!
In the project based learning (PBL) activity students will be creating and designing an obstacle course using area and perimeter, while applying many other academic skill areas. When completed, each student have created a race course that is completely unique to their choices and design.
Design An Obstacle Race Course
puts the designing and creation into the hands of the students. Students will dive deep to show they understand the how (and why) the math concepts of area and perimeter are used in developing race courses. It integrates multiple elements such as problem solving, collaboration, design, and planning that connect concepts across multiple platforms.
TWO VERSIONS INCLUDED
There are two versions of this project to fit multiple levels of learners for your classroom, while also allowing both to be successful. The key difference is the amount of multiplication and size of the numbers (50,000 to 500). No matter which version you choose for your students (or if you mix and match), the PBLs look almost identical. Even the finished projects will look the same!
STEM and Three Dimensional
Even after students have finished designing their courses, they will be able to incorporate STEM skills by developing three dimensional designs of their course and obstacles.
-50,000 square units used.
-Each unit equals 10.
-Course has specific requirements (size) that must be met. More multiplication required.
Differentiated Version (lower)
-500 square units used.
-Each unit equals 1.
-Course has requirements (items, not size) that must be met. Then they find the area and perimeter AFTER they have created it.
-This includes instructions and ideas for creating three-dimensional obstacles from your course.
-Create miniaturized posters that promote the course or obstacles.
Running the Numbers
These take the numbers a little bit farther. Students find total A&P of obstacles, how much free space, and other questions to maximize their course. This can e used for both versions.
Included are two versions of rubrics.
-Traditional (5-point scale)
These can be applied to either project version that you choose.
Photos of a finished race course, along with images of 3D creations that have been put on the course. This can be projected for students to see.
STEPS within each project
--First: Create an official name, design a logo and slogan for your race
--Second: Use your CHECKLIST and OBSTACLE pages to prepare creating your rough draft.
--Third: Design the rough draft of your race course.
--Fourth: Find area and perimeter of each item on the race course and field. Make sure they meet requirements.
--Fifth: Create the final version of your race. Make sure you add color and details!
--Sixth: Develop a Map Key/Legend.
--Seventh: OPTIONAL: Design and build your obstacles in a three dimensional format.
--Eighth: OPTIONAL: Complete UP CLOSE and RUNNING THE NUMBERS.
--Ninth: Turn into your TEACHER (the city council) for final approval!
-card stock (optional for the race course design, but not specifically required)
-crayons and colored pencils
-tape and glue
-access to recycle bin for scraps
-any household items kids might need to build their obstacles
The time frame for completing this project will vary greatly. If you are planning on completing it in a week, give 30-45 minutes per day.
All students will work at different rates, but by the end of the week students should be finishing the required steps (1-6) or trying some of the additional tasks.
-books or magazines on racing and obstacles
-videos that show that relate to racing. Youtube has a ton of short clips from Spartan Races, Warrior Dashes, even Wipeout. Those would help students develop an understanding of different types of obstacles.
See More Projects in my custom category: PROJECT BASED LEARNING
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