As part of the A+ Partners in Education initiative, HCLS and HCPSS present the Rube Goldberg Challenge. Named after the Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist, sculptor, and author, the contest is offered to school teams comprised of fourth and fifth grade Howard County students. The students transform everyday materials into a wacky innovative machine that accomplishes the given task. However, instead of just “solving” the problem, students are charged with making the solution as complicated and convoluted as possible. By designing and building the machine, students incorporate science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) concepts into their creations. Simple machine classes were taught at HCLS branches during the school year.
2017 CHALLENGE: Unfurl a Banner that is 18″ x 36″
- Advisor Information Meeting at HCLS Administrative Branch: October 13, 2016 at 4:30 pm
- Registration opens: October 14, 2016
- Registration deadline: November 18, 2016
- Projects Due: May 5, 2017
- Awards Ceremony: May 2017
A first, second and third place award is given in each of the the following categories. (Total of twelve awards)
- Most Green – The winning entry will utilize the most variety everyday recycled materials and items, based on a master list included in the documentation of recyclable materials based on Howard County’s Recycling Guide for County Collections.
- Most Scientific– The winning entries will most effectively communicate in writing how their simple machines function and connect to STEM.
- Most Humorous – The winning entries will demonstrate the witty use of non-traditional items sequenced to incorporate the element of surprise.
- Most Complex – The winning entries will incorporate a minimum of eight steps and be judged on the complexity of the design (e.g., number of steps, variety of machines).
- Most Complicated System – The winning entry will incorporate a complicated, interconnected use of simple machines within their machine system (e.g., travel upwards, travel backwards, not only using gravity as the force necessary for movement).
Community Favorite Award
To recognize the hard work of all students who created machines and submitted videos, a Community Favorite Award will be given based on popular vote. Watch students’ videos at this link and vote for your favorite machine between Monday, May 11 at 9 am and Sunday, May 16 at 11:59 pm. Follow the directions on this link for your vote to count. The entry that receives the most votes will receive the award.
Winning teams will be awarded trophies and certificates. All participants and their families will be invited to attend the celebration event in May 2017.
Essay Writing Rubric (for Most Scientific Award)
Rube Goldberg Challenge – Student Information – Student Information (.ppt)
Pulley – Word Find
Inclined Plane and Simple Machine – Forces Review
Introducing Rube Goldberg Lesson
Forces and Simple Machines
Simple Machines Song
Simple Machines Exploration Lesson Plan
Simple Machines FAQ
Simple Machines Inside and Out
“Quiz” on Simple Machines
Simple Machines for Kids
Fun Car Facts For Kids: Simple Machines Used In Automobiles
More information found at a web site recommended by teacher, Lisa Phillips.
Congratulations to the 2016 winning teams!