By Leigh Pirie
This project can also be called ‘Egg-Cellent Fun’, the ‘Great Egg-Scape’ or any other ridiculous punny titles!!
If you need an activity to keep your kids amused during the school holidays, then give this one a try. The aim is to create a ‘vehicle’ for an egg to go in and be dropped from a great height in the hope that the egg will not break.
What you will need:
- A variety of objects from around the house – boxes, icecream tubs, newspaper, cotton balls, material, etc etc
- Sticky tape, glue, scissors, pencils, crayons
- Boiled eggs (I boiled them for my small children so that the impact wasn’t so intense, and also so that they could be eaten afterwards and not wasted)
- A great height to drop ‘vehicles’ off. i.e. balcony, window, ladder.
Your child is to draw their intended plan for their ‘vehicle’. Depending on their age, this can be as detailed as you can encourage them to be. Try to get them to label their plan so that they know the objects they will need to gather together. They could do a number of plans if you would like the activity to last a little longer!
Constructing the ‘vehicle’. Now your child must start to create a vehicle which will keep the egg ‘smash-free’ when dropped from a great height. This can get a bit messy depending on how much newspaper, cutting, gluing and construction is involved. My daughter spent a whole afternoon building and adjusting her vehicles, so they can be a work in progress if you so choose.
To personalise your eggs, you may choose to get your kids to decorate them. I boiled our eggs so my daughters could draw faces on them and write names and decorate them just to make them more personalised before we threw them off the balcony! Again, this makes the whole activity last a lot longer and engages your child’s creative and artistic side, adding to their engineering and mathematical skills needed for the design.
Launch! Now that the vehicles have been designed, and constructed and the eggs have all been decorated, it is time to strap them in ready for launch.
Depending on the age of your child you may get them to write a report on the result of the experiment. They could do this in a variety of ways – scientific report, comic strip, speech, newspaper article, recount, narrative from the perspective of the egg…. Be as creative as you please depending on your child’s interests.
Be warned that the results are not always pretty and some kids may need to be prepared for their cherished egg to not survive the fall. However, it does then open up the opportunity to start all over again to improve their design.