|Name of Activity||Catapult|
|Keywords||design, challenge, build catapult, launch, LEGO, not classroom tested, k-3, 4-6, 7-9, prototype, Engineering Design Process, lever, fulcrum, force, load|
|Subject||Simple Machines, LEGO Building|
|Grade Level||K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9+|
|Time||2 Hours Total|
|Brief Description||An design challenge in which students will design and build a catapult and see which design will launch an object the furthest. This activity can use either Lego or non-Lego pieces. *This activity is not classroom tested.*|
|Lesson Objectives:||To apply building techniques and knowledge about levers to an activity challenge.|
|Materials Needed:||Simple Machine or RCX kits
Example photos of catapults
Assortment of extra LEGO pieces, especially beams
Engineer’s Planning Sheet
Ruler (yardstick or tape measure)
|Preparation and Set Up:||Collect necessary materials
Arrange students into groups of 2
Decide how you will distribute extra pieces and other materials
Write design requirements on the board
Find a section of the floor at least 15 feet long and put tape down on one side. Students will place their finished catapults on this line and launch the object from there, and the teacher can measure how far it has gone.
|Necessary Background||Review three different classes of levers.
Engineering Design Process
|Extensions:||Have students redesign their catapult to make it launch objects even further.
Have a class-wide competition to see whose catapult launches the furthest.