The basic premise:
You may know that leprechauns have the ability to grant three wishes to human captors in exchange for their freedom, but capturing leprechauns is trickier than it sounds!
Working in groups against criteria & constraints and equipped with a Leprechaun Lore List, students will design and build a device to lure and safely capture a leprechaun.
Multiple iterations are recommended to get the most student benefit, but this can also be treated as a one-off activity.
This is one of five challenges available at a 33% in the St. Patrick's Day STEM Challenge 5-in-1 bundle
This resource is also available in the STEM CHALLENGE YEAR-ROUND MEGA-BUNDLE at an even greater discount!
Benefits of this STEM Design Challenge:
- Focus on critical thinking, problem solving, and application of learning
- High levels of student engagement
- The potential to hit upon all NGSS ETS standards depending on the depth and number of iterations you choose to implement in your classroom (modifications included)
- Highly flexible and differentiated for materials, timing, grade levels, and rigor.
Each design iteration should be planned for at least 45 – 60 min. if you are including data gathering and analysis rather than just building for fun. If you add extension activities, you will need to adjust timing accordingly. I recommend working on STEM Design Challenges in multiple iterations to get the full value.
Materials you’ll need to do the activity are easily modified.
Sample/suggested materials for each student or group:
• For each student or group:
– Leprechaun (1)
• Represented by bouncy balls, marbles, or grapes
– Small cups or bowls (1)
– String/yarn (24 – 36 in.)
– Shoeboxes, cereal boxes, tissue boxes and/or or cardboard scraps (distributed evenly among groups)
– Tape (12 - 24 in.)
– Cotton balls (5 – 10)
– Rubber bands (5 - 10)
– Lunch bags or plastic baggies (1 – 2)
– Foil (12 in. sheet)
– Paper and markers
– Leprechaun Lore List (included)
– Design analysis handouts (included)
• Single hole punch
• Pipe cleaners (5 - 10)
• Craft sticks (5 – 10)
• Paperclips (10 – 20)
• Straws (5 – 10)
• Brass brads/fasteners (4)
• Toothpicks (10 – 20)
NGSS aligned standards, Grades 2 – 8
- Materials and timing
- Criteria & Constraints (including modifications to increase difficulty for older students)
- Measuring results
- Post-design extension activities list
- Criteria & Constraints List (editable version provided)
- Design Analysis Handouts (2-page regular spacing and 4-page expanded spacing for primary students included)
- Leprechaun Lore List
- Discussion Questions
- Process Flow Map
- Math Extension
Note: If you have purchased some of my non-holiday STEM challenges, this is a lighter – though not necessarily light – approach. Please download the preview to see the challenge, and don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions!
You might also like these products:
Seasonal STEM Design Challenge 5-in-1 Bundles (grades 2 – 8):
St. Patrick’s Day
Or these great products:
Photosynthesis: Hands-on Modeling Activity
Analyze and Interpret Data Unit