STEM: Holiday-Doodle-Challenges (Engineering)

Time Required: Two 45-60 minute sessions
Skill Level: Beginner
Recommended Grades: K to 2nd

The following holiday activities make fun STEM challenges for whole group activities. In the first challenge, students work with a partner to design a Christmas tree, decorate it, and then attempt to stack it along with all of the other doodled trees made by classmates in order to make the tallest tree stack without toppling it over (similar to Jenga). In the second holiday challenge, students will design their own spinning dreidels and then challenge classmates to see whose dreidel spins the longest. Happy holidays, everyone!

Note: Any links outside of the3doodler.com are optional resources. We can’t ensure their upkeep or accuracy.

Knowledge

Students have
  • had experience using the 3Doodler to outline and fill shapes.

  • had experience using the 3Doodler to weld objects together.

Objectives

Students will
  • doodle a Christmas tree.

  • attempt to stack Christmas trees to build the tallest tree.

  • doodle a dreidel.

  • play a dreidel game.

Materials

Students will need
  • 3Doodler (1 per pair)

  • tin foil (2 small sheets per pair)

  • 3D wooden or plastic blocks, i.e., triangular pyramid and cone. (1 of each per pair)

  • dreidel (1 per pair)

  • pennies (30 per trio)

  • (1 per trio)

  • Doodle-Dreidel-Letters

Lesson Plan

Instructions

Step 1

Call students to the whole group for a discussion.

Share the goal: During this session, students will attempt two different holiday challenges using the 3Doodler:

1) Stack the Doodle-Tree
2) The Doodle-Dreidel game

Step 2

Share background on Christmas trees using this website.

Prompt students to share their own Christmas tree customs, or other holiday traditions.

Step 3

Note the shape of the tree. Place various 3D shapes on the table for the students to view. Ask students which shape is the most similar to the tree?

*Cone

Step 4

Model how to use the cone to make a 3D Christmas tree. Cover the cone with tinfoil for easy plastic removal later. Place a dot of plastic firmly at the tip of the cone. Press it down firmly with your finger while still warm. Draw lines across the length of the cone to its base. Press the extruded material down firmly as you doodle. Fill in one segment at a time, then decorate with doodled ornaments.

Step 5

Note that the base must be even on all sides so that the tree will stand.

Step 6

Divide students up into pairs and hand out the 3Doodlers and cones. Circle to assist and assess as students work.

Step 7

Reassemble the students to play a Jenga-style game in which a member from each duo must stack a tree on the previous trees without toppling the stack of trees. Coach students to try stacking in different ways.

Step 8

For the Dreidel game, first show the students this website to acquaint them with the dreidel.

Explain how the dreidel is like a top. Show the video. Then review how to play the game and the meaning of each Hebrew letter.

Step 9

Prompt students to share their own dreidel customs and traditions.

Step 10

Ask students which 3D shape most resembles the sides and point of a dreidel?

*Triangular pyramid

Step 11

Demonstrate how to doodle a dreidel, covering the triangular pyramid with tin foil, outlining each side, and then filling. Doodle a Hebrew letter on each side and review their meanings. Doodle a cover and handle to spin the dreidel. *See images.

Step 12

Share the goal: To design the longest spinning dreidel.

Step 13

Divide students into trios. Hand out the 3Doodlers and triangular pyramids. Circle to assist and assess as students work.

Wrap Up

Share the students' Doodle-Trees and Doodle-Dreidels. Test the dreidels. Which one spins the longest? Why? Share the students' Doodle-Trees and Doodle-Dreidels on Twitter. @3Doodler #3DoodlerEDU

Assessment

The teacher will assess the students by evaluating their participation and understanding throughout all phases of this activity, and also by assessing their Doodle-Trees and Doodle-Dreidels.

Possible Extensions

  • Students play the dreidel game using either pennies or doodled coins.

Vocabulary

  • 3D - of, relating to, or representing something in three dimensions.

  • balance - an even distribution of weight enabling someone or something to remain upright and steady.

  • collaboration - to work jointly with others or together especially in an intellectual endeavor.

  • cone - a three-dimensional shape for which the base, usually circular, extends to a point.

  • construction - the building of something, typically a large structure.

  • data - factual information (such as measurements or statistics) used as a basis for reasoning, discussion, or calculation.

  • design - to prepare the preliminary sketch or the plans (for a work to be executed), especially to plan the form and structure of an object, building, bridge, etc...

  • engineering - the art or science of making practical application of the knowledge of pure sciences, as physics or chemistry, as in the construction of engines, bridges, buildings, mines, ships, and chemical plants.

  • problem-solving - the process or act of finding a solution to a problem.

  • STEM - science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, considered as a group of academic or career fields.

  • triangular pyramid - A triangular pyramid is a pyramid having a triangular base. The tetrahedron is a triangular pyramid having congruent equilateral triangles for each of its faces. The edge length and slant height of a regular triangular pyramid is a special case of the formula for a regular -gonal pyramid with , given by.

Educational Standards

Common Core
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.2.1

Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about grade level topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.

In This Lesson

Students will discuss how to build a sturdy, tall structure with their partners, teacher, and peers. Students will discuss how to design the longest spinning dreidel.

Common Core
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.2.1.B

Build on others' talk in conversations by linking their comments to the remarks of others.

In This Lesson

Students will build on the talk of others during the whole group and partner work throughout this project.

CS Teachers
1A-A-3-5

Decompose (break down) a larger problem into smaller sub-problems with teacher guidance or independently.

In This Lesson

Students will break down the process of building the tallest tree tower and/or the longest spinning dreidel through designing, modeling, and testing.

ISTE
1C

Use technology to seek feedback that informs and improves their practice and to demonstrate their learning in a variety of ways.

In This Lesson

Students will use a 3Doodler to construct trees and dreidels.

Common Core
6B

Create original works or responsibly repurpose or remix digital resources into new creations.

In This Lesson

Students will doodle their own trees and dreidels.

Common Core
7A

Use collaborative technologies to work with others, including peers, experts or community members, to examine issues and problems from multiple viewpoints.

In This Lesson

Students will work with a partner and peers throughout the doodling, problem solving and creation processes. Students will share their perspectives.

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