Build a Paper Tower
October 27, 2023

Activity: Build a Paper Tower (ES-MS)

  • Objective: Introduce engineering concepts while working together to design and build a paper tower using simple materials.
  • Reason: This STEM activity engages mentees in hands-on engineering, fostering creativity, critical thinking, and teamwork. It introduces them to basic engineering concepts while having fun building and testing their paper tower creations.
  • Materials Needed:
     Sheets of paper (8.5×11 inches)
     Scissors
     Tape
     Ruler (optional)

Introduction to Engineering: Explain that engineers design and create structures. Today, you’ll be working together to build a tall and stable paper tower.

Planning: Discuss the importance of planning before building. Ask your mentee to think about what makes a tower strong and tall. Brainstorm ideas together.

Materials and Rules: Explain that you’ll have a set number of sheets of paper and tape to use. You and your mentee can set a rule that only the materials provided can be used.

Design and Build: Start building! Here’s how you can proceed:
Fold and roll the paper to create cylindrical tubes (legs of the tower).
Use tape to secure the paper tubes.
Experiment with different lengths and widths.
Assemble the paper tubes to create the tower’s structure.
Make sure to tape the tubes together securely to build a stable tower.
Testing and Adjusting: Once the tower is built, test its stability by gently tapping it. Observe how it stands and consider how to make it more stable.

Height Challenge: Measure the height of your tower using a ruler. Encourage the mentee to think about how they can add height without compromising stability.

Reflect and Discuss: After completing the tower, reflect on the process:

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