Collaborative Construction Builds Bridges at Grundy Avenue

Collaborative Construction Builds Bridges at Grundy Avenue photo

Fourth-grade students at Grundy Avenue Elementary School came together to complete a common goal as they applied basic engineering principles to construct a bridge capable of holding an added load.

Students in Donna Marie Sherwood’s class were challenged with the task of creating a bridge that could withstand an unspecified amount of added stress. To begin the activity, students learned about the engineering process and how different shapes withstand force. It was determined that a triangle was the strongest shape and would be a valuable design element to incorporate into their bridges. Students were broken up into teams, and each group was provided with toothpicks and Dots candy to assemble the strongest bridge. 

With a designated span of 6 inches to cross between student desks, each member of the team shared ideas as they navigated through their respective bridge constructions. At the conclusion of construction, students tested each bridge, adding blocks until their bridge broke. 

Throughout the activity, teamwork was emphasized, and how with input from all team members each goal becomes more attainable.