Eyes Open for Engineering

Our class STEAM work helps us to notice cool engineering everywhere we look!  Here are three interesting ones I came across this week.  What have you seen in your summer adventures?  Hope you’ll comment!

An engineer friend from church lives next to Lake Sunapee and made friends on her walk “with a guy who was putting his gorgeous wooden steamboat in at the harbor. Then that guy offered us a ride! The boat, named the Sunapee Zephyr, is finished with cedar and the engine is wood-fueled. The sounds and smells were amazing! It’s way quieter than a typical motorized boat.”  Thank you, Emily, for sharing this!

Engineering helps us solve everyday problems.  One problem my parents have, living next door to a farm, has been the manure spreaders splashing liquid manure on their road as they go back and forth to the fields with each load.  This week when I drove by the field, I noticed the tractors now are attached to the tank back at the barn with a gigantic hose!  It looks like a huge umbilical cord that allows them to spread all the manure without ever transporting the manure.  I looked it up online, and they make hoses up to five miles long for the giant farms out west.  Sounds silly, but try having a picnic when your whole neighborhood smells and you’ll realize how genius this is.

We are redoing our barn roof, and we didn’t want to squash our flower beds.  Look at this nifty shingle slide.  We use our problem solving skills every day in life.

So what engineering have you spotted?

Giving Engineering?

There is joy in serving Jesus!  Our theme of the week needs to be lived out in actions, so we looked around for a way we could serve someone.  As our morning meeting activity, teams brainstormed engineering challenges to bless our first graders, who have the most fabulous building area in their room.  Then the teams filled a bag with all the supplies needed for each challenge.

Shhh . . . we are secretly dropping off the mystery engineering bags every few days.  (For example, use these supplies to build the tallest thing you can.  Create something with wheels using these supplies.  Design your own robot to add to your building area.)  We can’t wait to see what they think as they try our challenges!

Meet Engineer Gabriel!

I’d like to introduce you to Gabriel, the astounding engineer of the Fanbot 3000 that heartily greets every young engineer as he or she enters our room this year.  As one of my former Sunday School students,  I offered him an engineering challenge this summer, and he took it on with great skill.  He is a passionate investigator, questioner, artist, and more.  Stay tuned for more blog posts from him.

Cliffhanger:  I “paid” him with engineering supplies such as wires, batteries, and switches, and wait until you see what he did as a scribblebot followup!