Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Zip Line Zaniness

Due to a busy few days and video editing challenges, this is coming out a bit late, so thanks for your patience.  Here are some of the things we did... This (Last) Week In Gifted!

Zip Line Zaniness

The Tuesday afternoon Summerland group and the Wednesday morning Penticton group were given the following challenge: transport one ping pong ball along a slanted 4 foot length of fishing line using only the following materials:
  • small paper cups (3oz)
  • metal washers
  • plastic straws
  • masking tape
  • wooden skewers
Were they able to do it?????

Yes!  (link)



The variety was great!  Iain's only used 2 different materials--a paper cup and a washer!  While others used all of the materials.  Oscar hung his carrier over the fishing line with masking tape--he put it on so the smooth side was next to the fishing line making is really fast.

After a successful run with one ping pong ball, the best thing happened.  Almost without exception, each student or pair of students said "Can I try it with more ping pong balls?"  They all either refined their designs -- made them faster or run more smoothly -- or they increased the number of ping pong balls they could transport.

Check out the craziness in the following video (link).



Incredible work!  So many different designs and such persistence!  I didn't show the fails, and there were many, but students were not deterred.  They know that an unsuccessful attempt is part of the process.  We've been talking a lot about the design process, illustrated in the following image.

If your first prototype doesn't work, no worries.  It has taught you something and you will use it to improve when you make your next iteration and your next one.  That loop at the bottom of the diagram can get pretty addictive too.  I think had we had more time and more ping pong balls, the record might have climbed even higher than the amazing number it got to (you have to watch the video to find out what that amazing number was!)

Project Time

All of the classes are very busy working on their projects.  Ellen presented hers on Wednesday and we're looking forward to seeing more projects in the next couple of weeks.

Thanks for checking out what we've been up to!

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