High River READesign – Nov 2018 – Session 3 & 4

Our final two sessions for this edition of READesign at the High River Library saw our participants design, build, and test devices for slowing the fall / decreasing the impact of a fall for their action figure (designed and 3D printed from our 2nd session class).

Joe Hardy exits the stolen airplane in our novel without a parachute, and has to carefully consider anything from increasing his ‘drag’ or wind resistance by spreading out his arms and legs to increase surface area to slow his fall, to looking for softer surfaces to land on to decrease his impact on landing! Frank skydives to his rescue with a parachute in the book, but we wanted to see if we could increase the time in the air for our action figures by slowing their descent and reducing their impact on the ground!

Before testing our devices, we tried the test rig out by dropping heavier action figures from different heights into a pan of jello, to explore the distance they fell into the pan vs. height dropped from and talked about momentum and energy.

Jorge and Vance building their devices
Vance choosing materials for his device
Setting up to drop the ‘Hardy Boy’ action figure and fall-delay device for testing
Making some adjustments
BrainSTEM Volunteer Jen setting up our test rig again for another test

After the testing, we tried an experiment where we made microwave meringue ‘clouds’ for snack. Unfortunately an experiment using a water bottle to suck egg yolk from our cracked egg broke the yolk, and we didn’t have a replacement….so, what can you do? We continued with the recipe using yolk AND white, and it turned out a little different than expected – though still quite yummy!

Making meringue clouds!

Our final session of READesign was completed with a wrap up building a motorized paper airplane kit from PowerUp toys, discussing airplane components on a Remote Control airplane, and programming the Library’s Sphero robots for some more maze-busting fun.


Thank you to our amazing volunteers and participants for this session!

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