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Students gain insight from Rube Goldberg champions
Students gain insight from Rube Goldberg champions

Dayton Elementary School students gained inspiration for their classroom engineering projects from the Purdue Society of Professional Engineers team who recently won the national Rube Goldberg Machine contest in Chicago.

Members of the team brought a part of their machine to Beau Scott's 4/5 high ability classroom Friday to share how they used creativity and teamwork to build their contraption. The competition involves building a machine to do the simplest task, like pouring a bowl of cereal, and completing it in 75 steps or more. The team used Lucky Charms cereal to fit its medieval-themed creation.

Fifth-grade student Hadley Allen thought the demonstration was amazing. "I loved seeing how it all came together," says Hadley. "I learned you can do some awesome creations with random bits and pieces."

Hadley says she was inspired by the Purdue team's visit to see what more she and her classmates can do with their own classroom Rube Goldberg machine.

"As we have been learning about simple machines in the classroom, I wanted to find a problem-based learning activity that would inspire my students and drive their interest in engineering," says Scott. "I'm so thankful they were able to sit, watch, learn, and interact with these amazing Purdue students today. What an awesome learning opportunity!"

Right now Scott's students are using dominoes, marbles and Hot Wheel tracks. Maybe adding some of the same concepts and some Lucky Charms cereal will make it magically educational.