Windmill STEM Challenge

My 6th graders have been getting pretty wild as the end of the year approaches so I needed to do something this last week of school to keep them engaged and to save my sanity.  We just wrapped up climate and climate change so I wanted to do something in that content area so we made windmills as they learned about alternative energy resources.

They had so much fun!!  I had so much fun!! The activity makes the process very student directed, I just had to set up the materials,  manage the timing, and then circulate to help with problem solving.

I wanted the students to focus on the rotor blades (the spinning part of the windmill) so I created bases they could attach them to.

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I set up a testing area in the back of the classroom:

file-2They had to measure how long it took to wind up the binder clips.

The students did an amazing job staying focused, sharing the testing area, and getting their work done.   Here are a few of their amazing creations!

After testing how quickly they could lift the binder clips, I added a cup with washers to see how much they could lift.   Our record was 140 grams.

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It was such a fun way to keep the kids actively engaged on the last few days of school!  Get the full lesson here at my TPT store!

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