Apples A-head Fall STEM Challenge

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Apples A-head Fall STEM Challenge

$3.98

In groups, students will design and build a wearable device to balance an apple on their heads, which they will use to participate in an Apples A-head relay race.
– Students will design their headwear in groups, but each will make his/her own (to minimize any lice concerns). They can decide as a team, and based on available materials, if each member will create unique designs or replicate the team design.

This challenge is great for any time of year, but especially in the fall when learning about apples, Johnny Appleseed, or Sir Isaac Newton!

This back-to-school STEM / STEAM Challenge brings the joy back to your classroom with collaborative, hands-on, brain-busting work (disguised as fun)!

The basic premise:
In groups, students will design and build a wearable device to balance an apple on their heads, which they will use to participate in an Apples A-head relay race.
– Students will design their headwear in groups, but each will make his/her own (to minimize any lice concerns). They can decide as a team, and based on available materials, if each member will create unique designs or replicate the team design.

This challenge is also great for any time of year, but especially in the fall when learning about apples, Johnny Appleseed, or Sir Isaac Newton!

Note: This is the printable version. If you are in a 1:1 / paperless classroom, you will want to check out the digital option for use with Google Slides instead.

If you have questions about which version is right for you, please feel free to leave me a question using the product Q&A below.

 


Resource includes:


NGSS aligned standards, Grades 2 – 8

Teacher Tips
– Links to STEM Challenge How-To videos
– Materials and timing
– Criteria & Constraints (including modifications to increase difficulty for older students)
– Measuring results
– Post-design extension activities list
– Link to a video walk-through of the challenge

Student Handouts
– Criteria & Constraints List (color and black & white; editable version provided)
– Design Analysis Handouts (2-page regular spacing and 4-page expanded spacing for primary students included) (color and black & white)

– Discussion Questions (in color and B&W)

Extension templates
– Process Flow Map
– Create Math Problems Based on Designs
– Apple writing templates
– Gravity research log

 


This is one of five challenges available at a 40% discount in the Back-to-School STEM Challenge Bundle

This resource is also available in the STEM CHALLENGE YEAR-ROUND MEGA-BUNDLE at an even greater discount!


 

Sample/suggested materials for each student or group:

Materials you’ll need to do the activity are easily modified. Amazon Affiliate links are included below. See disclosure.

Optional


Benefits of this STEM Design Challenge:

– Focus on critical thinking, problem solving, and application of learning
– Helps students develop growth mindset traits like persistence and resilience
– High levels of student engagement
– The potential to hit upon all NGSS ETS standards depending on the depth and number of iterations you choose to implement in your classroom (modifications included)
– Highly flexible and differentiated for materials, timing, grade levels, and rigor.

Each design iteration should be planned for ~60 min. if you are including data gathering and analysis rather than just building for fun. If you add extension activities, you will need to adjust timing accordingly.


What do teachers have to say about this resource? Comments taken from TpT store.
“I did this with my class today and they could not have raved more about it! The kids were so engaged….they didn’t even realize how much engineering they were actually doing! I love how you have the link to the YouTube video as well. It really helped me, as a teacher, to organize myself to teach this lesson! Thank you so much for your hard work.”

“This was the most fun to watch and kids had to really think. We will be doing this every year!”

“Best STEM activity of the year so far….thanks!”

“Great way to extend Johnny Appleseed activities and get students thinking and working together.”

“Great resource! Easily adapted for my grade 2 students as a beginning of the year getting to know you activity.”


This resource is also available in the Back-to-School Bundle and on Teachers Pay Teachers.

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