There are few more iconic lab experiments than the classic “egg drop.” And for good reason: the experiment involves a wide variety of content standards, in addition to important life skills taught at the Academy. CPA eighth grade science students designed and tested their own egg-protecting contraptions as part of their unit on Physics. Consider how purposefully this experiment teaches the following 21st Century skills.
Communication and Collaboration: Students worked in pairs to create egg-carrying devices and to gather the necessary data during the drop, such as weight and time of flight.
Creativity and Innovation: Given a limited supply list, students created the egg-carrying device without guided instruction. Instead, the young scientists relied on their own creativity and understanding of mass, air resistance, gravity, and force to design a completely original device.
Critical Thinking: In addition to applying knowledge of physics to the design, students also analyzed the mechanics of the drop by calculating the velocity, acceleration, force, and momentum of the egg and contraption.
Problem-Solving: From difficulties with material limitations, to determining why the experiment resulted in a splattered egg post-drop, students solved problems at every turn.
Decision-Making: Using content knowledge, combined with other skills, students ultimately had to decide on exactly how they would successfully complete the challenge.
Eighth grade student Grace said, “My favorite part was definitely the design. It was challenging to come up with a plan to protect the egg, thinking about the height of the drop, and the mass of the unit. Ours worked out, though, because the egg was totally intact after the drop!”