Teacher: Robin O'Hara 

Prerequisites: None

Ages: 9-12

Class size: 6-16

Materials fee: $35.00 (to cover the cost of project materials and misc. class expenses)

Tuition: $30

Supplies Needed: 3-ring binder with notebook paper OR spiral notebook and folder w/ brads (for notes and handouts), a pen/pencil for note-taking and jotting down ideas when project brainstorming and random items to be gathered at home throughout the year

Homework: Occasionally students will be required to bring in materials from home for certain building projects and may be tasked to work on a project at home should time warrant  


COURSE DETAILS: Have you ever wondered why bridges and buildings and the many other structures all around you are designed and built the way they are?  Are you amazed by how tall skyscrapers can be without falling down?  Or how a bridge can support the many vehicles moving over it?  Hopefully, by the end of this class, students will have some insight into these questions and more.


Through discussion and in-class projects, students should gain a basic understanding of engineering design principles and other STEM concepts as we incorporate Steven Caney's Ultimate Building Book and other miscellaneous sources. 


Each week we will perform one or more projects.  Some projects will be done independently, while others will be done in teams of two or three students.  Several of the projects will take two to three weeks to complete and will involve design goals and a competition with fellow students.  We will also have fun with projects building off the principles of Rube Goldberg, a cartoonist, inventor and engineer who loved to make what should be a simple task into a complex chain of "machines".  Projects taking multiple weeks will require students to take home their ongoing projects and bring them back to class the following week. 


Prepare to be challenged in this hands-on STEM class where you will not only have fun getting creative, but you will hopefully come out with a greater appreciation for the amazing structural achievements God enables mankind to do!