Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 205C
Rube Goldberg Machine Contests challenge middle school, high school, and college students to build complex inventions that complete simple tasks while linking STEM and the arts.
Presenter(s): Jennifer George (Rube Goldberg, Inc.: Wesport, CT); Shawn S. Jordan (Arizona State University: Mesa, AZ)
GRADE LEVEL: General
Cartoonist Rube Goldberg is emblematic in representing the comedic over-complexity inherent to technology and society in our everyday lives. In this spirit, the Rube Goldberg Machine Contest challenges middle, high school and college students to build complex inventions that complete simple tasks while linking STEM concepts and the arts. Participation in these fun competitions supports National Science Education Content Standard E: Science and Technology, while also promoting critical thinking, teamwork, and creativity in an inquiry-based differentiated classroom or informal education environment. This session will first provide an overview of Rube Goldberg’s influence on pop culture and the excitement elicited in students of all ages by Rube Goldberg machines. Then, innovative student-built examples from the International Online Rube Goldberg Machine Contest for Ages 11 – 14, High School Rube Goldberg Machine Contest and Collegiate Rube Goldberg Machine Contest will be shown. Finally, curriculum and pedagogical strategies for integrating the Rube Goldberg Machine Contest into the classroom will be discussed.