Engage your students with this week-long STEM challenge.
In order to land a delicate probe on Mars, scientists have to consider a variety of
things, including how to slow down the probe as it enters Mars' very thin atmosphere,
and where the probe will actually land. You are an engineer at JPL, NASA's Jet
Propulsion Laboratory. Your team has been tasked to build a prototype landing device
that will protect an egg when it is dropped from 3 meters. This challenge is not as easy
at it sounds though. You will be asked to stay within a budget and will also be judged
by the accuracy of your landing to a set target. Leaving the Earth is a critical step in
ensuring the survival our of species in the long run. The project may seem like a small
step in the process, but your prototype will be help guide the future projects that JPL is
working on. The ultimate goal is to one day build a sustainable living environment on
another planet. Failing this challenge is not an option for humanity’s sake. Good luck!
• The 21st-century problem includes a video challenge which outlines the activity in a fun and easy to understand way.
• The slideshow presentation (PPT and Keynote) allows the teacher to facilitate the pacing throughout the project.
• The teacher lesson plans include TEKS and NGSS standards alignment, and step-by-step directions on what the teacher and students should be doing along the way.
• A list of suggested supplies. Most STEM projects can be built with very few perishable items (paper, cardboard, plastic, straws, toothpicks, etc.)
• The student notebook will guide the student through the activity. The questions will challenge students to learn new information, reflect on learned information, and provide the students a framework for the entire project.
• Each lesson is written using the Launch process. Students are going to be brainstorming with their peers and reflecting on failures and opportunities. At the end of each project, we’ve asked the students to share their ideas with the world. This holds students accountable. They will put forth the best effort knowing other students could critique the project.
What Supplies Do I Need?
Each product contains a list of suggested supplies for the project. We were very cautious about choosing inexpensive items. This project has a suggested supply list that includes: Cardboard (2'x2'), Glue, Toilet paper/paper towel tubes, Pipe cleaners, Scissors, Paper, Tape, Plastic baggies, Bubble Wrap, Styrofoam Peanuts - Sandwich bag full, Saran Wrap, String, Yarn, Egg carton, 6" fabric squares, Tissue Paper, Paperclips, Rubber bands, Toothpicks,Popsicle Sticks or Tongue Depressors
The supply list is dynamic and can be adjusted to your situation.
NGSS and TEKS Standards
Aside from the engineering components of this project, students will be learning about accuracy and precision, the effects of gravity, and how the effects of unbalanced forces (air resistance) change the speed or direction of an object.
NGSS: MS-ETS1-1, MS-ETS1-2, MS-ETS1-3, MS-ETS1-4, 3-PS2-1, MS-PS2-2
TEKS: 8.6A, 6.8B
Other STEM Challenges
Project: Rocket Launch - Create Rocket That is Ready for Launch
Project: Birdman - Design a Bird Beak for a Feeding Frenzy
Project: Electric - Design a System to Harness Wave Energy
Project: Hurricane Defender - Build a Hurricane Proof House
Project: Inhabit Mars - Build a Landing Device for Mars
Project: Lunar Base - Design a Lunar Colony
Project: Move - Design a Pulley System To Move a Heavy Load
Project: Save the Oceans - Design a Device to Clean the Oceans
Project: Skydive - Design a Parachute For Your New Business
Project: Thrills - Design A Fast and Furious Roller Coaster
Project: Wind and Sky - Create a 21st Century Turbine
Project: Explore Mars - Create a Space Probe for a MARS Mission
STEM Challenge Bundle 20% off
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