bridges

Last week, Christie and Phillip took their band to the Golden Gate Bridge and to the design firm AutoDesk last week to explore bridges and become familiar with terminology, styles of bridges, materials they’re made of, and forces that act upon them and make them stay up.

At the bridge, they used what they had learned about measuring a city block to measure the entire length of the Golden Gate.

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Phillip writes, “Wednesday, we spent the morning recalculating out measurements we took on the bridge. Students had to count their tally marks and multiply by 25ft. We created a table of actual distance vs. measured distance and calculated our percentage of error. Zada took the prize by coming within SIX FEET of getting the actual length of the bridge WOWZA!! The whole group won the challenge of having their averages come under 10% of the actual distance.”

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They got a tour of AutoDesk from one of our parents’ friends and took a look at their models:

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This week, they dove into designing their own bridge that will lead from the top of their bandspace to the mezzanine. In groups, they’ve used what they’ve learned to make rough inaccurate sketches and turn them into more formal drawings, which involve learning about proportions and scale drawings. They practiced by drawing their bandspace to scale on graph paper.

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Some have started converting their drawings onto Sketchup and building more accurate and stable models.

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Phillip continues, “Today, students broke out into their groups with a goal of presenting a successful “pitch” to us and other Brightworks staff as clients for their bridges. In teams, tasks were delegated by the Project Manager into model building (physical or in SketchUp), presenting, or researching. We watched a video of Walt Disney’s pitch for the original EPCOT concept, noting important characteristics of an impressive pitch. Students spent they day working on their individual tasks, which involved a lot of Sean-questions.”

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Their presentations are at 1:00 tomorrow in a formal board room mezzanine with their clients, who will vote on the most promising design.