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May 2015

Splendid Spans

golden gate bridge at sunset  

On May 27, 1937, thousands of students celebrated the opening of the Golden Gate Bridge by vying to be first across it. Since then, more than 2 million vehicles have made the 4,200-foot trip. While several suspension bridges now are longer, none rivals San Francisco's in design elegance. This month's activity will transport your civil engineers. Watch them count every cent!
Activity: Paper Penny Bridge Challenge


pile of pennies  

Teams of students in grades 8 and up learn about the engineering design process and physical forces by building a bridge from a single sheet of paper and up to five paper clips that will span 20 cm and support the weight of 100 pennies. Like real engineers, teams also have limited budgets and must make trade-offs.


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Build a Human Suspension Bridge (Grades 4-6)  

Suspension Bridge Building (Grades 5-12) 

Bridge Building: Tension & Compression (Grades 6-12)   

Bridge Building Curriculum from Yale (Grades 5-8)  



Grades K-5  |  Grades 6-8  |  Grades 9-12


Feature: Bridges to Literacy through Literature



Concord bridge revolutionary war

Bridge-design projects can help build a love of reading along with teamwork and problem-solving skills. See if any of these notable literary works about bridges - such as Concord Hymn, Ralph Waldo Emerson's ode about the "rude bridge that arched the flood" (picture, right) where the first shots of the Revolutionary War rang out - inspire your budding civil and structural engineers!  


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Happy Birthday, Golden Gate Bridge! 

East River Pioneer Emily Roebling

Tufts University Bridge Library




Spotlight: ASEE's K-12 Engineering Workshop

ASEE K12 engineering workshop participants 2014 Did your state adopt the Next Generation Science Standards? Looking for research-proven ways to engage your students? Whether you seek fun, hands-on activities to enrich your STEM classes or a chance to network with peers and engineering educators from across the country, the American Society for Engineering Education's K-12 Workshop in Seattle is the place to be on June 13Sign up now!          


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TryNano. -- Nanotechnology is in products from cosmetics to medicine. TryEngineeing's new website includes lessons, games, and other resources to teach it. Learn more. Video Contest.
Public school 6th and 7th graders create short videos about where energy comes from and how it's used. Submit by May 29. Learn more.

Report: Improving STEM Education.
-- Green projects, embedded engineering, and other tips for boosting learning are the focus of AdvancED's spring issue. Learn more.  

Young Minds Design Contest. -- Middle and high school students create a product to solve a problem or improve a process. Enter by May 31. Learn more. 

Explore Our Site: Helpful Links for Teachers

Cynthia Breazeal Wants You to Make Friends with RobotsJetman: Flying Soon to a Landmark Near YouUnderwater Scooters are the New SCUBAEbone Pierce - Mechanical Engineering StudentTurning Air into WaterVertical Forest Coming Soon to Milan
bulletPrepare your students for engineering school with these 10 Essential Steps.
bulletChange your students' perceptions of engineering students.
bulletIntroduce your students to young engineers who are already making a difference in the world.
bulletStay up-to-date with cool engineering innovations.
bulletFind out about the engineering design process.
bulletLearn about the different types of engineering.
bulletRead our magazine online.
bulletCheck out all the items in our
bulletExplore lesson plans and class activities.
bulletView our archive of past newsletters.


If I Were an EngineerIt's never too early to learn about engineering. Along with our 5th Edition magazine and classroom cards, Engineering, Go For It offers an engaging children's book in its collection of learning materials.


"If I Were an Engineer," from the American Society for Engineering Education, is a fun, 40-page rhyming book that introduces engineering to kids 5 to 8 years old. It includes a parent page that explains the various engineering disciplines.  


Price: $7.95


Now available in our store.   


About the eGFI Teachers' Newsletter


Delivered each month to your email inbox, our newsletter is packed with lesson plans and activities, resources, feature stories, and the latest developments in K-12 engineering education. eGFI is part of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), a non-profit organization committed to enhancing efforts to improve STEM and engineering education.   

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