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The Floating Stone STEM Challenge
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This outdoor STEM activity gets students thinking and questioning what properties make something either float or sink. They will be faced with the challenge to get a stone to float using only natural materials, string, and tape.


- Stones (roughly the size of a golf ball - the bigger the stone the more the challenge)

- Tape

- String

- Bowl / tub of water

Teaching Structure:

Get students to think of examples of items that both float and sink. Encourage them to start thinking about what it is that makes them float or sink. Explain that their mission is to make a stone float using only natural materials before the end of the lesson. Put students into groups of 2 or 3 and get them to complete the mind map sheet.

Once they've discussed their ideas, set them off on their challenge. We find 15 - 20 minutes is enough time for this part of the lesson. It’s a good idea to limit the amount of string and tape they can use. The less string and tape used the more the challenge.

Once students have successfully made their stone float or the time has run out get them to complete the evaluation sheet or simply discuss the questions on the task cards. The task cards can be placed at different points in your outdoor space.

Finally, get students to share their thoughts and ideas as a whole class.

The-Floating-Stone-Evaluation-Questions_- Diff.-2.pdf
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