What you need:
- Stuff from your kitchen!
- Gather up to 15 items from your kitchen.
- Work together to create the tallest structure using only items from your kitchen.
- Take a picture and post it on on social media to share your creation! Use the hashtag #discoveryathome
Ways to expand this activity:
- Send a picture of your creation to a family or friend and challenge them to create one!
- Redesign your project using different constraints. Create something using only the plates or silverware from your kitchen.
What kids learn:
- Spatial or visual thinking. Being able to imagine the positions of objects and how they interact is an important skill for learning to navigate the world and later, as well as learning math and language.
- Symbolic thinking, or the ability to think about one thing representing something else. When small children begin to connect different materials that make up a structure with real life structures, they start building the connections in the brain that allow for reading and learning later.
- Basic engineering skills. Engineers solve problems with constraints. They learn to solve problems by using the engineering design process: asking questions, coming up with solutions, building, testing and improving.
- Constraint: a limitation or restriction. Materials, time and space are common constraints. Real engineers have to work around constraints all the time!
- Foundation: support or base upon which something rests. Think about the human body. If someone’s feet create the foundation of their body, then if their feet are spread apart they have a strong foundation and will less likely fall over. However, if their feet are close together their foundation is not as strong and cannot support the top part of the body.