Second Grade: Bridges and Biomimicry

In second grade we have been learning about biomimicry, a science that encourages inventors and engineers to look to nature to create solutions and inventions.  My students chose an animal to research.  They learned about their adaptations and considered how one of the adaptations could influence the design of a product that would positively impact our world.  Each student created an advertisement for their product.  They uploaded their image into Thinglink, an amazing app.  The kids used Chatterkids, PicCollage, Comic Book, Educreations, Video, etc. to share more about their product and the animal that influenced their invention.  Many are still working to finish, but here are 2 to give you a sneak peak.  The rest will be posted next week.

You need to hover over the images.  You will see dots pop up on the image.  You click on the various images to see all the work they have done.

By Kaylee
By Dasom (Still a Work in Progress)

We have also started our study of a structure that was initially influenced by nature…the bridge.  We are looking at the way humans developed the design of bridges over time, the forces that impact bridges, and the main types of bridges.

I started by giving the kids a challenge: Build a bridge, with one piece of paper, 5 paper clips, and scissors that is capable of handling a live load of 100 pennies.  Here is a video of the kids creating, redesigning, and testing.

We then discussed some of the forces that caused our paper bridges to fail or succeed.  The second graders learned about the main types of bridges and how to decide which one to build in any given situation.  The 2nd graders broke into 6 groups and each group built a different bridge.

On Monday we will look at the differences and which work better in which situations.  Each 2nd grader will also begin researching a famous bridge for their end of year structure project.

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