Left: Blendon winners Nolan and Joseph – 191.5 cm. Right: Walnut Springs winners Olivia, Ava, and Sophia - 278 cm.
Design Challenges are concluding for many middle school advanced science classes. The Newspaper Bridge Design Challenge took place recently for several seventh graders. Design Challenges are a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) initiative. For this one, teams of students were asked to build bridges out of masking tape and newspapers to demonstrate the effect of weight or another force at a distance from a pivot or support point (torque). In addition, it makes clear the need for the upward support of the bridge to counteract the downward force of the load. Pupils further develop an experiential understanding of how structures are designed to bear loads and downward pulls with gravity.
Blendon Middle School students, taught by Patrick Schubert, Nolan Rough and Joseph Kwon built a bridge that spanned 191.5 cm. Walnut Springs Middle School students, taught by Phil Carney, Olivia Hollerich, Ava Sharett, and Sophia Wright, built a bridge spanning 278 cm. The design challenge is supported by the Science and Gifted Education Departments.