In this hands-on engineering design challenge, patrons experiment with levers to launch a ping pong ball as high as possible!
Provides classroom connections, key concepts, connections to science standards, and additional resources.
|Add a Tech Twist||Optional: Try using a slow-motion camera to capture just how high the ping pong balls travel!|
|Hints for uses in your library||
Please be mindful of patron safety and ensure that no one is standing too close to the "launch site."
Try this next!
- Increase the number of balls you launch. Redesign your launcher so it can send two balls in the air at the same time.
- Play a launch and catch game. Set up a target in your landing zone and challenge a friend to a launch and catch game.
- Think big. Make a supersize pop fly launcher.
This activity can easily be expanded by using other commonly-found materials around your library! For younger patrons, try making a connection by asking them about see-saws.
Remind patrons to utilize the engineering design process. Failure is OK!
Levers at Play Activity
Levers at Play How-to Video
|Originating Source||PBS Design Squad|
[Suggest a book]
These children’s books all deal with various themes involved in engineering such as the engineering design process, specific projects such as building bridges or houses, and perseverance through failure.
• Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty
• Iggy Peck, Architect by Andrea Beaty
• Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty
• This Bridge Will Not Be Gray by Dave Eggers
• Cross a Bridge by Ryan Ann Hunter
• What To Do With an Idea? By Kobi Yamada
• Ish by Peter H. Reynolds
• Stuck by Oliver Jeffers
• The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds
• The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires
• How a House is Built by Gail Gibbons