This resource is guaranteed to spark creativity and loads of on-task excitement in your classroom! All you need is everything included here and a few simple items you already have in your classroom! You can use it with without the inspirational children's book: - your choice!
It's mess-free, stress-free, and TONS of FUN for big thinkers of all ages! This is the perfect any-time-of-year activity that will leave even the littlest engineers (like my Kindergarteners!) feeling extremely successful and engaged in the creative process.
Included in this resource (all accessible for display and printing through Google Slides) you get:
✅2 pages of instructions and teacher tips to answer all your questions and get you off to a great start,
✅2 printable student pages for kids to record their data on (these sheets also walk them step-by-step through these steps: ask, plan, create & evaluate, and ask more & improve. I run them back to back so every kid just needs one paper),
✅A 20-word word search for fast finishers (or to use anytime! Honestly- my kids didn’t want to EVER stop building bridges so I just put this out later for fun! Haha!),
✅Real-life photos, info, and Google Earth links to 10 of the structures that inspired Iggy Peck in the book (see his leaning tower of diapers in the book and then show kids there is a real place that looks like it! You can even take a “virtual Google Earth field trip” and look around!),
✅31 beautiful, engaging slides that walk you and your students step-by-step through the bridge building STEM experience!
Preparation/ More Details:
This activity is a thoughtful, engaging, hands-on experience in bridge building. You can definitely add your own spin on everything, but here are details about how I like to do this lesson with my kindergarteners:
- I like to have kids work in partners so they can help each other and engage in meaningful conversations. You could also have them do this as individuals or small groups.
Each group needs:
- ✏️one regular sized piece of paper for the bridge (plain or construction- regular 8.5x11 inch size or larger),
- ✏️a 6-inch wide paper to be the water (I used blue construction),
- ✏️a bunch of small, simple objects to test how much weight the bridges can hold (pennies, floral gems, mini erasers, or anything you already have in your classroom)
- ✏️two identical height objects to form the sides of the bridge (again, use whatever you have in your classroom: dictionaries or stacks of books, plastic cups, wooden blocks, etc.). If you just collect the items, kids can do all the actual setting up. Full page color photos throughout the Google Slides guide them through all the "Do's" and "Don'ts."