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Strengthen a Paper Bridge


Source Institutions

    Twin Cities Public Television

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Strengthen a Paper Bridge

In this quick activity (page 1 of the PDF), learners will test how many pennies a flat paper index card bridging the gap between two stacks of books is able to support. Then, learners alter the structure of the same card by folding it accordion-style and retest by again stacking pennies on top. Learners look for a relationship between the number of folds and the number of pennies the card can hold by creating a scatter plot. Relates to the linked video, DragonflyTV: Tug O’ War.

Quick Guide


Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 14

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity, Model

Language:
English

Materials List (per group of students)


  • several kitchen recipe cards (or index cards)
  • 2 stacks of books
  • 30 pennies, or more!

Subjects


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
    • Technology
      • Construction
  • Mathematics
    • Data Analysis and Probability
      • Data Analysis
      • Data Collection
      • Data Representation
    • Geometry
      • Solid Geometry
    • Problem Solving
    • Reasoning and Proof
    • Representation
  • Physical Sciences
    • Structure and Properties of Matter
      • Mass and Weight
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations
      • Gathering Data
      • Formulating Explanations
      • Communicating Results
  • The Nature of Technology
    • The Design Process
      • Problem Solving
      • Troubleshooting and Maintenance

Informal Categories


  • Model Building

Audience


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities

Culture, ethnicity, and gender

  • Girls

    • Highlights STEM opportunities for this group
    • Identifies role models or mentors in STEM fields from this group
    • Uses inclusive images of people from this group

Other


Components that are part of this resource:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access

By:

Source Collection:

  • DragonflyTV

Rights:

  • All Rights Reserved, Twin Cities Public Television, Inc., ©2006

Funding Source:

  • National Science Foundation, 436260

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