‘Launching’ Into Engineering

‘Launching’ Into Engineering photo

Second grade students from Cherokee Street Elementary School recently increased their engineering skills with assistance from a representative of the Long Island Maritime Museum during the recent “Launch It” event.

The goal of the day’s lesson was to use the provided materials in order to build a catapult which could safely send a clay ball through the air and onto a designated area, located a few feet away from the launch site. The students were supplied with a handful of quarters, which could be used in an effort to “purchase” materials which would assist with creating their catapults. The materials at their disposal included paper clips, rubber bands and spoons, which could all be utilized to assist in creating the perfect catapult. 

Working in small groups, the students created drafts of what they envisioned their launchers to look like, including design features and the proper materials required to bring them to life. After designing their launchers and “purchasing” the right materials, the students engaged in a trial and error method in order to successfully launch the clay ball from the starting point to their destination.