# Summer SAVY, Session 5 Day 4, Engineering Design (Lewis) (1st-2nd)

Posted by on Thursday, July 18, 2024 in blog, SAVY.

Engineering Design discussed elephants to start our day off. Did you know that an elephant weighs 7 tons? We continued our exploration of the Brooklyn Bridge by reading the story Twenty-One Elephants and Still Standing. We learned that when the Brooklyn Bridge was constructed, people were amazed at its size but were skeptical that it would hold the weight that it was supposed to. Mr. Barnum devised a plan that would excite people about the circus and prove the bridge was strong, sturdy, and stable. He marched his elephants, 21 in all, across the Brooklyn Bridge in front of the large crowd of people. To everyone’s amazement, the bridge was still standing. We enjoyed this story, and it led us to discuss what makes a good bridge.

In our Math Exploration time today, we learned that shapes are a part of math and very important in the bridge-building process. Students explored pictures and books about bridges, looking specifically for the different types of geometric shapes that civil engineers use in their bridge designs. Shapes like these, especially triangles, are strong when forces push down on them. Student teams then used geometric shapes with wooden blocks and Magnatiles to construct their own bridges.

In the afternoon, we learned the criteria and constraints for the bridges they will build tomorrow. The bridges must be at least 4.5 inches tall, span 15 inches, and be strong enough for a toy car to pass safely. Their bridges may only use specific materials (craft sticks, straws, tape, index cards, paper clips, paper, tape, and string) and not fall below the failure line.

Students then moved on to the Imagine stage of the Engineering Design Process where they drew two different ideas and labeled the materials they would use. Finally, they got with their construction partner to decide on the final plans and materials to be used. Students will build and improve their bridges in the morning. We will present our bridges to the other Engineering Design section in the afternoon.

We finished up our day with STEAM Stations and discussed questions for the guest speaker, a civil engineer, whom we will have in the morning.

Tomorrow is going to be a fun day!

Mrs. Lewis and Ms. Sharon