Both boys are on spring break this week from preschool and elementary school respectively. Now, spring break around here is hit or miss weather wise, usually more of a miss. I came across this project idea for building a bridge from Science Sparks (a new monthly link up they have called Challenge and Discover) and thought, what a GREAT project! The boys took to it quite enthusiastically, and it took up most of a morning. It definitely was one of the best science projects we’ve done. Not only did we get to draw out what we thought our bridge would look like, we got to build it out of newspaper (!!), measure and look at numbers, have a failed experiment, rethink our project, and then have a successful bridge. WOO HOO!
The guidelines to the project were: A) The bridge had to hold at least one kilogram (1kg=2.2lb) and B) the bridge had to be made out of one object in the recycle bin. Here is what we did for our project.
We used newspaper and scotch tape.
Here is the draft that my oldest drew for what he thought the bridge would look like. I would like you to note the star shape under the bridge!
For my preschooler, I printed out different bridges and had him circle ones he liked.
Next, we rolled up the newspaper in order to make it sturdier, like sticks. We rolled up half sheets, then cut them in half again for the bridge supports. For the main bridge, we rolled up a whole sheet for the bridge decking.
Our supports. I helped with this phase, I think we rolled up 12 pieces of newspaper to make 24 supports.
The boys figuring out how to attach them together.
My oldest went back to his drawing and decided the star design was the strongest. He went to town with the tape.
Cutting to level the supports.
The bridge decking, and all the leg supports.
The preschooler was Captain Tape Giver Person
He also measured the length and width of the bridge.
The bridge was 32 inches long, and 6 inches wide.
My oldest then went to taping the star shaped supports to the bridge deck.
The bridge is finished! We did have some problems with leveling (my husband later surmised it may have been sturdier on carpet, or another more giving surface than hardwood).
First test: EPIC FAIL!
We decided that scotch tape was not strong enough, so we went back and reinforced the supports with duct tape. SUCCESS!
Overall, this was a super fun and exciting project. My oldest did most of this, from drawing the bridge, to figuring out how to make it from the supports, to being sad about it not working, to suggesting the duct tape. We even made a video where he explains everything, if you want to watch. Thank you again, Science Sparks, for hosting this great event! We look forward to what’s in store for next month!
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