From the beginning of human history, people have been building things. Over time, building to provide shelter and meet basic needs has grown into sophisticated construction projects that serve our society in a variety of ways.
Born to Build: Engineering Creativity is your very own construction zone; a space to let your creativity and imagination run wild as you explore basic building concepts related to engineering, math, art, science and more!
So jump in and get hands-on to learn about stacking, simple machines, interlocking pieces, transportation, and of course the force that helps make all of this building possible in the first place: gravity!
The “Brick-yard” (Legos)
Did you know that in Danish, Lego means “play well”? Plastic Lego bricks are a great example of interlocking pieces that use pressure to stay together. The strength of structures created with interlocking pieces allows for complex building designs. What will you create using Legos?
Ramps and Rollers
Gravity is the force that attracts people and the things we build with toward the center of the earth. Gravity can helps us transport things from place to place through the use of ramps, or inclined planes. How will you move a wooden ball from one place to another using gravity, ramps, and support structures of varying heights?
Often chosen for building projects for their attractive appearance, arches can be challenging to build and usually utilize stacking to create two towers of bricks, blocks, or another material. For an arch to stand, these two towers rely on the most important piece of an arch, the keystone. Pressure created through gravity holds an arch together. What are ways you can work with others to build an arch that will stand on its own?
Stacking bricks, stones, or boards together can create a tall building or tower, but the addition of interlocking pieces can create something that is much stronger. Classic log cabins are a terrific example of this, and have been used by people to create shelters and homes all over the world. What will you construct using giant interlocking builder boards?
Construction Crossing (Train table)
Since it’s inception, the railroad has been one of the most important means of transportation carrying the materials needed for the construction of the communities where we live, work, and play. Jump into the engineer’s seat to build your very own transport train. How will you get the building materials to the construction site? Which cars will your train consist of?
People have been building towers for thousands of years. It is important to understand that construction projects that “reach for the sky” are not an attempt to defy the force of gravity; rather they are a way to utilize it. Many structures, including tall towers, are built by stacking materials one on top of another. What are ways you can use basic stacking and gravity to create super tall towers?
Itty Bitty Builders
Are humans really “born to build”? In our earliest years, adults care for us and provide shelter, yet the desire to create seems to be an innate part of who we are that begins to emerge almost immediately. For generations, basic wood building blocks have provided little hands and minds with the opportunity to begin building a world of their very own. What will your little builder create and discover today?