Activity 4


Kimberly  Brassfield

Lesson Title:

Building and Modifying Challenge Phase 

Activity Title:

Building and Modifications of Challenge

Lesson Duration:

5  50-minute class periods

Activity Duration:

4  50-minute class period


Classroom and outside on football field


July 14, 2016

Activity Objectives:
  • Students will build their packaging model to ship flower on drone across the length of the football field.
  • Students will test their package during flight across football field on drone. Students will determine if the box did not damage and if the flower stayed presentable.
  • Students will use their findings after testing to make refinements on packaging.
  • Students will create a display of initial design, refinements, new design, and surface area calculated to present in a poster session with all students in class.
  • Post-test will be completed
Activity Guiding Questions:
  • What successes and failures did you have in shipping your package across the football field?
  • What refinements can be made to allow your package to ship more successfully?
  • What refinements can be made to allow your package to be more cost effective?
  • How can you make your presentation chart paper allow you to get all your ideas across in an organized fashion?
  • Carnations
  • Water
  • Cotton balls
  • Plastic
  • Paper towels
  • Rubber bands
  • String
  • Paper clips
  • Cardboard
  • Scotch Tape
  • Newspaper
  • Plastic Wrap
  • Foil
  • Wooden Dowels
  • Drone
  • Refinements Sheet
  • Chart Paper
  • Pencils, Markers
  • Rulers
  • Compasses
  • Post-Test
  • Challenge Rubric
Teacher Advance Preparation:
  • Have materials ready and laid out for students.
  • Copy Refinements Sheet for each group to make note of refinements as soon as testing is complete.
  • Be sure that students are aware of presentation requirements and length. (Refer them back to Challenge Rubric)
  • Copy Post-Test for all students.
Activity Procedures:

Day 1: Building

  1. Students will finish building their packaging containers and complete calculations of surface area.

Day 2: Testing and Modifications

  1. Take entire class outside and fly package on drone across length of football field. Be sure to use the same height and speed for all groups.
  2. Students will check packages to determine if their prototype was successful in keeping the flower presentable and box intact.
  3. Groups will discuss modifications and refinements that would have allowed their packaging to be more successful and begin redesign sketch of packaging after their testing is complete and while other classmates are still testing. *Require students to specifically state WHY they are making the refinements they are making.

Day 3:Modifications and Communicate Solution

  1. Continue to make refinements on package. Students must fill in Refinements Sheet to be turned in. 
  2. Create poster for a poster session with entire class the next day. Groups will be required to put an annotated sketch of initial design & redesign of packaging (noting modifications made and why), computations of calculating surface area – calculating total cost of packaging on a poster and compare it to the original.

Day 8: Communicate Solution and Post-Test

  1. Poster Session 
  2. Post-test


Formative Assessments


Summative Assessments



Students will work as a group and utilize one another’s strengths through the engineering design process: building, sketching, writing, calculating, etc.


  • Students worked in teams to create their packaging model to ship carnation on drone across the length of the basketball court. Due to weather conditions, we could not go outside. Therefore, it was learned to always have an alternate plan. Students were eager to get in class each day and work. They did great with predetermining their materials ahead of time. We spent two class periods building.
  • On the next day, we were able to fly the drone across the basketball court. Students determine if their package was not damage and if the flower stayed presentable. Once their testing was completed, they took the time to answer the reflect on refinements they would make after seeing their success/failure during their trial and document these changes in the EDP packet.
  • Due to time constraints with Spring Break, students were not able to present their successes, failure, and refinements. Instead, students created a powerpoint presentation that was shared with myside which included the following: the initial design, refinements, new design, and surface area calculated for both the original design and refinement.
  • Students completed their post-test the same they created their PowerPoint; again due to time constraints.

Overall, this was great. Students were super excited about shipping their package on a drone and they all went relatively well. Students also all did a super job with refining their package to minimize the surface area. Poor weather conditions and timing issues were the only downfall in this activity.


Unit Academic Standards - NGSS


Ohio’s New Learning Standards for Science (ONLS)

Expectations for Learning - Cognitive Demands

Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)

Science and Engineering Practices

Crosscutting Concepts

Ohio’s Learning Standards for Math (OLS) and/or Common Core State Standards -- Mathematics (CCSS)
Standards for Mathematical Practice
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them
Reason abstractly and quantitatively
Model with mathematics
Use appropriate tools strategically
Attend to precision