I can explore ways to make paper stronger
I explore some of the techniques that could make my bridge stronger
I can record my observations in order to draw conclusions.
pennies or other identical weights (blocks, pieces of pasta, paper clips etc)
Books to rest your bridge on/between.
Optional - a selection of other materials such as foil or card.
Now build and test your own paper bridges with pennies or pieces of pasta.
Can you find out for yourself which shape is the strongest?
What material works the best?
Only use 1 sheet of paper per bridge
Fold the paper to change the thickness.
Fold or roll the paper to change its shape.
Layer/put several pieces of paper together. You can cut one single sheet into smaller strips and layer those on top of each other.
Ask your child to write what happened to each bridge or record the number of weights it did manage to hold.
- sheets of paper
- tape/glue stick/paper clips/stapler
- weights to test on top of the tower such as books, CDs, DVD boxes (whatever you choose try to collect items of similar weight/thickness/size and it helps if they are flat.
- a selection of recycled materials (tubes, yoghurt pots, bottles, tins, card, corks, paper, sticks)
- you might also have construction sets you could make use of e.g. wooden blocks, k'nex, Lego etc but this is not required for this activity.
Ask - Can you design and make a beam bridge to help the Gingerbread man to cross the river?
Explain/discuss the gingerbread man’s needs and create a design criteria together.
It must reach from one bank to the other.
A beam bridge should have columns or supports at each end.
The columns or supports should be freestanding (can stand on their own without being stuck to the table)
A beam bridge needs to have a deck so the gingerbread man won’t fall through the frame.
Ask - He has also asked if you can you find out which shape would make the strongest supports for your bridge before you start? Cuboids, cylinders or triangular prisms? Watch the clips to find out how you could investigate this.
You will need paper or card and tape or glue available to make their own columns (paperclips might also be used if you have no tape or glue). Your child might need help with where to fold the paper to make a cuboid or triangular prism.