Experience the Pythagorean Theorem on a human-scale by building structures of great height and strength using your knowledge of geometry. Working in teams, students explore how various geometric forms made of dowels and rubber bands have different strengths. They will investigate the shapes needed to build strong towers, domes, or bridges that can withstand a load of up to 13 pounds. Apply math and engineering principles to build a SUPER STRUCTURE.
LEARNING LAB MAX: 32 students per lab session, with 3 lab sessions available per hour TIME: 50 minutes GRADE: Designed for grades 6-8 COST: $6 per lab, per student. This does not include museum admission.
Students will learn about the relative strengths of different geometric shapes.
Students will learn how the shapes disperse / redirect the loads they experience.
Students will cooperatively problem solve and apply their knowledge to engineer a solution to a problem.
Students will manipulate materials to discover the Pythagorean Theorem's application to structure and building design.
SUPPORTS MINNESOTA STATE STANDARDS:
The Nature of Science and Engineering
Determine and use appropriate safe procedures, tools, measurements, graphs and mathematical analyses to describe and investigate natural and designed systems in a physical science context.
Use logical reasoning and imagination to develop descriptions, explanations, predictions and models based on evidence.
Distinguish between open and closed systems.
Determine and use appropriate safety procedures, tools, measurements, graphs and mathematical analyses to describe and investigate natural and designed systems in Earth and physical science contexts.
Recognize that when the forces acting on an object are balanced, the object remains at rest or continues to move at a constant speed in a straight line, and that unbalanced forces cause a change in the speed or direction of the motion of an object.
Geometry & Measurement
Describe, classify and sketch triangles, including equilateral, right, obtuse and acute triangles. Recognize triangles in various contexts.
Describe, classify and draw quadrilaterals, including squares, rectangles, trapezoids, rhombuses, parallelograms and kites. Recognize quadrilaterals in various contexts.
Describe and classify three-dimensional figures including cubes, prisms and pyramids by the number of edges, faces or vertices as well as the types of faces.
Apply scale factors, length ratios and area ratios to determine side lengths and areas of similar geometric figures.
Use the Pythagorean Theorem to solve problems involving right triangles.
Informally justify the Pythagorean Theorem by using measurements, diagrams and computer software.
Request a Learning Lab
Learning Labs are available for school groups at 10 a.m., 11 a.m. or 12 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays, from October to December 2014. From January to May 2014, Learning Labs are available at 10 a.m., 11 a.m. or 12 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays. Minimum/Maximum class size: 16/32 students. Reservations are required at least 2 weeks in advance for Learning Labs. To make your reservation, fill out the Field Trip Reservation Request, email
, or call (651) 221-9444 Tuesday - Friday, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Learning Labs Price: $6 per lab, per student. Requires museum admission. Minimum 16, maximum 32 students per lab. (288 students total capacity per day)