Project Based Learning in Action - Boat Challenge

Project Based Learning in Action - Boat Challenge
Posted on 10/31/2018
Mr. Southerland and the Boat ChallengeStudents in Mr. Southerland's Engineer Exploration classes had the opportunity to apply their classroom skills to solve a real world problem. The fate of the hypothetical Eagle Shark Delivery Service was at the mercy of their creativity and ingenuity.

Students were given the following design problem:  The Eagle Shark Delivery Service, once a leader in water freight delivery, is losing market share from companies that have newer, faster, and more efficient water carriers. If they simply purchase boats and ships based on these new designs, they will just be able to compete with the new companies. They do not want to just compete but dominate the market with water vessels that are faster and more efficient than the water vessels that are currently in use by the new companies. Your company is tasked with researching, designing, building, and testing a freight carrier model that is faster and more efficient than the one used by the competition.

As if this design problem were not enough to get their minds working, students also faced a specific objective with this project. Their vessels had to carry as much weight as possible--a scaled minimum of 100,000 pounds.

The limitations really made the project interesting. Students' vessels could be no longer than 12 inches, no wider than 3.5 inches, and no taller than 2 inches. All vessels also needed a pull pin attached to the front.

The materials were equally challenging. These market-dominating vessels could only be created using paper, tape, staples, and water-proofing materials supplied by Mr. Southerland.

This cross-curricular real word project was truly a sight to behold!