Thursday, April 10, 2008

Young Inventors 101: Popsicle Bridges

Have I mentioned yet that our kids have been participating in a homeschool co-op for the first time? I will elaborate on it once co-op night happens in a few weeks and I've got some more fun pictures, but for now I'll share what E9 has been working on.

One of the classes he's taking is Young Inventor's 101 and he's built newspaper bridges, paper rockets, and a few other things. For a couple of weeks the class worked on popsicle bridges. Finally he was tasked to bring it home and make it a family affair and bring it back on Monday for the contest.

Dan left E9 with a webpage on truss bridges and told him to choose one. The only other guideline E9 was given was a reminder that popsicle sticks are all one size and to maybe find a bridge that uses same size pieces. E9 chose the Brown truss design. Dan reports he would have chosen differently, but they went with it. It took them some time to decide how to connect these supports and they were limited by drying time since Dan put off the project until the last minute. was Dan.

In the end, this is what they chose and all the little crossbars are being glued on the same side. If drying time was not a factor, then they would have done half on the opposite side.

Contest results? E9 came in 7th out of 8 places, BUT his bridge held 50lbs of weight! It held 5 regular bricks plus a 25lb cinder block at the SAME time! Whew!
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