Apollo 13 Maker Space

Provide students with a tinkering challenge similar to the scene in Apollo 13 - make this connect with that using only these things.

Photo of Michelle Fontenot
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Astronauts are forced to make do with what they have at hand, which is often not what they would prefer to use to get the job done. In a pivotal scene in Apollo 13, engineers on Earth are asked to help the astronauts connect portions of an air filtration system using only materials the astronauts have at their disposal, re-purposing ordinary items for a life-saving task. Students might be asked to do the same in a maker space contrived to solve such "astronaut dilemmas."

Currently, I'm wondering how to improve the idea, using this Google Doc as a Think Pad. Please feel free to add your thoughts! :)

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Photo of Amanda Briden

I love Apollo13 and this idea Michelle. It brings things back to the physical and tangible engineering side of problem solving, rather than theoretical or computers or apps or smart phones. The exercise would probably showcase leadership skills and how teams organise themselves to solve problems. Nice! 

Photo of Michelle Fontenot

Thank you for the feedback! I would love to explore more about how the impact of truly real world problems influences student creativity.