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Design a Contraption

In this activity, students build or draw a design for a contraption and explore how parts of machines work together. It’s not important if the idea would actually work, it’s the thought process that matters.

These activities are part of Science World's Big Science for Little Hands program. They were developed and tested with Preschool and Kindergarten educators.

 

Objectives

  • Demonstrate how machines work.

Materials

  • Per Class or Group:
    paper
    coloured pencils
    various materials- recyclable are GREAT!

Key Questions

What To Do

Set up

  1. Explain the task and be sure that the children fully understand what they are to do.
  2. Use the rubric for scoring.

Task

  1. Design a contraption or invention with several different parts. The contraption mighthelp with work around the house, outside or in the classroom. The contraption might be a new toy for a baby or child. It could be built from materials around the classroom,assembled from take-apart machines, or presented as a design drawing.
  2. Students should explain what the machine does and how its parts work together. It’s not important if the idea would actually work, it’s the thought process that matters.

Extensions

Other Resources

Science World | Big Science For Little Hands

Gadgets and Contraptions Printable guide