Confetti Launcher

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Hooray! In this design challenge activity, learners invent a device that launches a spoonful of confetti into the air. Learners are encouraged to create the biggest cloud of confetti possible. Educators can use this activity to introduce simple machines as well as the design process. The associated Leader's Notes handout includes instructions on how to play a creative-thinking game to prep learners for the challenge.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
30 to 45 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$5 - $10 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 14

Resource Type:

English, Spanish

Materials List (per group of students)

  • paper confetti
  • 1 straw
  • 2 sheets of cardboard (approx. 8.5 x 11 in.)
  • duct tape
  • 1 wooden spool
  • 4 paint stirrers
  • 4 rubber bands
  • 2 8-oz. paper cups
  • 2 4-oz. paper cups
  • string


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
  • Physical Sciences
    • Motion and Forces
      • Machines
      • Projectile Motion
  • The Nature of Technology
    • The Design Process
      • Invention and Innovation
      • Problem Solving
      • Troubleshooting and Maintenance

Informal Categories

  • Toys


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Components that are part of this resource:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


Source Collection

  • Design Squad Nation


Funding Source:

  • National Science Foundation, 0810996