FUNology: Build it Up, Knock it Down

This fun STEM program based off live-action Angry Birds, but we tried different set ups and demolition. FUNology is a program at AACPL that focuses on integrating interesting scientific principles with science activities, experiments and education. My programs tend to be fun, loud, and messy– just like me!

Once the guests arrive: Split entire room into 3 groups, 1 group will participate in the “Big Build” while, groups participate in the smaller build activities. Then rotate once everyone in the “slingshot” group has shot three times.

Plastic Cup Stack, with Catapult Launcher

2015-04-16 18.58.02(1)

Supplies:

  • Hot Glue
  • Tongue Depressors
  • Bottle Caps
  • Paint Sticks
  • Clothes Pin
  • Pack of Plastic Cups

 Building the Catapult:
Use hot glue to combine the materials: tongue depressor, paint stirrer, clothespin, and bottle cap. In this image, they use a block of wood instead of a paint stirrer.

clothespinPart one; build the largest strongest structure using the plastic cups.

Part two, try different lengths from the edge of the table and different blocks to hit the cups and knock them over with marshmallows.

Catapult Mathematics/Physics: Trajectory [truh-jek-tuh-ree]

Physics The line or curve of an object moving through space.

You can change the trajectory of an object by moving the launcher closer or farther from the edge of the table to hit the plastic cups, or by changing the angle of the launcher.

Block Tower with Rubber Band Sling-Shot Launcher

2015-04-16 18.58.15

Supplies:

  • Rubber Bands
  • Foam/Wooden Blocks
  • Bean Bags

Building the Slingshot

Interlock 7 rubber bands, and two kids will hold them while one pulls the bean bags back.

Step 1, Build a structure using the blocks.
Step 2, Each team member gets 3 tries to launch the bean bags with the slingshots.

Teamwork: In step 2, the team must use 3 people to operate the slingshot. One person to hold each side and one to launch. Then switch!

 

Slingshot Science: Potential/Kinetic Energy

Kinetic Energy is energy in motion. Moving water and wind are examples of kinetic energy.

Potential Energy is stored (or latent). Energy can be stored in many ways, and if it were released, it would do a lot of “work.”

“The faster the bean bag moves, the more energy it has…As the bean bag gets higher, it slows down, so its kinetic energy decreases.”

Build a structure to protect your balloons/Launch the animals at the structure

Supplies:

  • Various cardboard boxes, odd shaped foam and other hodpodge of materials.
  • Baloons (hint: placing a marshmallow in each balloon will make them less likely to float awy.)
  • Stuffed Animals

Part 1, Build a structure using our materials to protect your balloons. You have as much time as you need to use the materials available to build a structure to protect 10 balloon-birds.

Part 2, Everyone will hold their stuffed projectiles to launch at the balloon tower to try to destroy it and expose or pop the balloons.

 

Rules:

  • You must be able to see all of your balloons from the front, while standing behind the line
  • You must only throw when the course is clear
Angry Birds Engineering: Building steady structures

Science (Physics): Force

Example of Potential Protective Structure

Building the Catapult:
Use hot glue to combine the materials: tongue depressor, paint stirrer, clothespin, and bottle cap. In this image, they use a block of wood instead of a paint stirrer.

Part one; build the largest strongest structure using the plastic cups.

Part two, try different lengths from the edge of the table and different blocks to hit the cups and knock them over with marshmallows.

Catapult Mathematics/Physics: Trajectory [truh-jek-tuh-ree]

Physics The line or curve of an object moving through space.

angry birds

You can change the trajectory of an object by moving the launcher closer or farther from the edge of the table to hit the plastic cups, or by changing the angle of the launcher.

Block Tower with Rubber Band Sling-Shot Launcher

Supplies:

  • Rubber Bands
  • Foam/Wooden Blocks
  • Bean Bags

slingshot

Building the Slingshot

Interlock 7 rubber bands, and two kids will hold them while one pulls the bean bags back.

Step 1, Build a structure using the blocks.
Step 2, Each team member gets 3 tries to launch the bean bags with the slingshots.

Teamwork: In step 2, the team must use 3 people to operate the slingshot. One person to hold each side and one to launch. Then switch!

Slingshot Science: Potential/Kinetic Energy

Kinetic Energy is energy in motion. Moving water and wind are examples of kinetic energy.

Potential Energy is stored (or latent). Energy can be stored in many ways, and if it were released, it would do a lot of “work.”

“The faster the bean bag moves, the more energy it has…As the bean bag gets higher, it slows down, so its kinetic energy decreases.”

Build a structure to protect your balloons/Launch the animals at the structure

2015-04-16 18.47.31

Supplies:

  • Various cardboard boxes, odd shaped foam and other hodgepodge of materials.
  • Balloons (hint: placing a marshmallow in each balloon will make them less likely to float away.)
  • Stuffed Animals

Part 1, Build a structure using our materials to protect your balloons. You have as much time as you need to use the materials available to build a structure to protect 10 balloon-birds.

Part 2, Everyone will hold their stuffed projectiles to launch at the balloon tower to try to destroy it and expose or pop the balloons.

 Rules:

  • You must be able to see all of your balloons from the front, while standing behind the line
  • You must only throw when the course is clear
Angry Birds Engineering: Building steady structures

Science (Physics): Force

Structure Example

Example of Potential Protective Structure

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This entry was posted in Kids, Preschool, Programming, Public Library, Science Experiments, STEM and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to FUNology: Build it Up, Knock it Down

  1. orangerful says:

    I was supposed to do an Angry Birds program this spring but life got in the way. Glad you had fun! I think I will try again in the fall so I know who to go to if I have any questions. 🙂

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