The basic principles of engineering and design were at the forefront of a recent second-grade activity at Cayuga Elementary School that challenged students’ ingenuity with two simple supplies.
Second-graders in Faith Baker’s, Jaimie DiPalma’s and Kristin Ruhs’ classes were tasked with constructing the tallest towers they could using only 100 toothpicks and a cup of candy corn. To begin the activity each student group drafted a design which they would follow using the supplies provided. As the construction of their towers began, students worked collaboratively to problem-solve throughout the difficult build process.
“You had to be very gentle because the candy corn could break easily,” said Allie, a second-grade student who participated in the activity. “My favorite part was finally getting our tower to stand.”
Throughout the activity, teachers reiterated the importance of developing solutions for problems that arose during the lesson and working together with their peers to reach their goals.