United States Roller Coaster STEM Challenge - Engineering Design

Vivify STEM
4.2k Followers
Grade Levels
K - 5th, Homeschool
Standards
Resource Type
Formats Included
  • PDF (22 pages)
  •  Activity
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Vivify STEM
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Easel Activity Included
This resource includes an interactive version of the PDF that you can assign to students to complete on a device, using Easel by TpT. Learn more.

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Description

Go on a thrilling ride with this complete lesson! Read the letter from fictitious travel guides explaining the invention of the roller coaster in the United States. Students will first learn about different forms of energy, including potential and kinetic, with a detailed demonstration along with learning about the science involved in riding a roller coaster. Then, using the engineering design process, student teams are tasked with designing a roller coaster to get a ball into a cup! Students also learn about the STEM careers of structural engineering and neuroscience to bring in a real-world STEM connection. Related math problems extend the learning fun!

Click here for an editable STEM journal to use with distance learning, including digital and printable versions.

As with many STEM activities that are student-driven, this challenge can be tailored to students of various skill levels and abilities.

Included in this product:

  • Detailed teachers guide with links to resources
  • Grading rubric for the engineering design process
  • STEM Career Connections
  • Science demonstration instructions
  • Student handouts to guide them through the engineering design process
  • Math extension problems

Required Materials for Challenge: Paper/plastic cups, tape, foil, cardstock/standard paper, scissors, paper plates, craft sticks, and a small ball.

Looking for more STEM lessons? Find the Vivify resource guide here: bit.ly/VivifyResourceGuide

About STEM Challenges: Click here to learn more about the 3 Stages of STEM. STEM challenges are an engaging way to incorporate the engineering design process into your classroom or after school program! These hands-on activities allow students to work in teams, apply the engineering design process, and connect science topics to real-world applications. The teacher will provide the structure to the project, but students will take an active role in designing and building their own device.

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Total Pages
22 pages
Answer Key
N/A
Teaching Duration
2 hours
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Standards

to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
NGSS3-5-ETS1-2
Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
NGSS3-5-ETS1-1
Define a simple design problem reflecting a need or a want that includes specified criteria for success and constraints on materials, time, or cost.
NGSS3-5-ETS1-3
Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.
NGSSK-2-ETS1-1
Ask questions, make observations, and gather information about a situation people want to change to define a simple problem that can be solved through the development of a new or improved object or tool.
NGSSK-2-ETS1-3
Analyze data from tests of two objects designed to solve the same problem to compare the strengths and weaknesses of how each performs.

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