This lesson is part of a series of lessons designed for educators to facilitate student-led inquiry around environmental topics. If there are time constraints, this lesson can be split into two at the Elaborate portion of the lesson.
You can learn more about this series here.
You can access this lesson plan as a Google Doc here.
Time: 90 minutes
Guiding Question: How can we affect change?
Objective: Students evaluate their solutions from the last lesson and make plans to share their knowledge. To wrap the project, students will participate in a retrospective.
Time: 20 minutes
Optimizing the Design Solution
Students will continue through the engineering design process by iterating on their projects. Looking back at their constraints and criteria worksheet, students should pull their top 5 criteria and constraints, and write them along the y axis of a graph. Along the X axis, students should label 1 to 10. Their graph should look something like:
Now, students will take the solutions they've proposed at the end of the last lesson and rank them for each criterion/constraint, with higher numbers being associated with the more positive state of the criteria/constraint. They will then total the scores to help them determine the solution that is the best fit given the criteria and constraints. This work may look something like: ## Explore
Time 25 minutes
Using the rankings generated above, students will choose one element of their best fit design to improve in this new iteration. When deciding which criteria or constraint to improve upon, students must take their limited time and resources into consideration. For example, students working on solution one below might want to improve fragility since it's the lowest score, but they can more quickly cut down on expense and may choose to go that route.
Time 10 minutes
Write up your design (photos, steps to a plan, instructions for use) and share with the class.
** 15 Minutes**
Students will gather their materials into a single document guide. They have already created:
- Some background information/relevance
- Project Plan
- Materials List
- Data sheets (blank)
- Steps for Analysis
- Design solution
Students should post this guide to Public Lab so that others can learn from their projects or apply them to their own local issues.
Students should have time to reflect on the following questions for the entire project (all four phases):
- What went well?
- What did not go well?
- What would you do differently if you were to repeat this process?
If time permits, students should post this as an update to Public Lab.
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