It is nearly impossible to imagine life without engineering. Ask a teenager to give up listening to music on an mp3 player or texting on a mobile device, and they may understand the point. In this activity, you will help young people appreciate engineering as a career that contributes to our health, happiness and safety—by having them design and create a shoe. Using simple materials, but following the traditional engineering approach of design, build, test and communicate, you will lead students in a creative and fun exercise of footwear innovation to solve a problem: jump higher? eliminate foot odor? walk softly? Students choose a challenge before devising their own feat of engineering.
What do I need to know about this activity?
This activity is an easy and fun way to introduce a career choice to young students, whether you are an engineer or not. The emphasis is on creativity through a straightforward process that allows you to have your audience look at engineering in a way they may not have before. If you are an engineer you will be able to share your real life experience. This activity is ideal for you if you enjoy…
- Engaging an audience through hands-on activities
- Helping others learn something new
- Encouraging creativity and problem solving
- Time required: one hour to prepare and gather materials, and one hour to lead the activity
- Since this is a classroom activity, it is best scheduled during the school year
- You can choose any materials you want for the students to build their shoes—there is a suggested materials list in the start guide
- IBMers can apply volunteering hours to their THINK40 total.