STEM Activities for Elementary
Making a balloon car is fun and has lots of science and engineering in it. This was a terrific project. My students were given a variety of materials and asked to make a car that could be powered by a balloon. STEM projects for kids are a great way to introduce students to design thinking and the engineering design process for kids.
Engineering Activities for Kids
Students are challenged to make a balloon-powered car. Students worked in groups to design a car, draw and label a diagram, test their balloon car, and redesign as needed. Students love STEM challenges like this.
The first thing the students had to make was the chassis. I used this as an opportunity to introduce the new vocabulary word:
Students made these in a variety of ways.
Next, the discovered that the wheel axel had to rotate. There were several ways to do this but one was using a binder clip and another a straw.
Of course, they also had to figure out how to attach the wheels nice and straight for proper rotation.
Next, they had to figure out the balloon part.
Then we tested the vehicle.
After initial testing, I allowed time to revise the design. This group found that the balloon dragged and slowed down the vehicle so they raised the balloon.
Once everyone had the design they wanted we had a race.
The emphasis was on design thinking, revising, and using science and engineering practices.
Other design ideas….
This was so much fun we agreed to do it again on another day. The students will continue to use their engineering skills and gain understanding.
This activity is available in several products here on teachingscience.us and in my TPT Store. This activity is available along with other STEM challenges and follow-up pages in the following product.
Thank you for visiting my blog! Please share this great idea with a teacher you know!
See other ideas for STEM Challenges
Are you looking for STEM Engineering Challenges for Distance Learning? I have a whole post on that!