My kids are active kiddos. They would rather run and jump around a room than sit and read a book or fill out a worksheet. Because my kiddos are such active learners, I’ve had to be creative in how I present concepts they are learning at school and elsewhere. Sometimes, they won’t get a concept until we’ve done it in a hands-on activity form. My active kiddos love hands-on STEM projects, and they are particularly fond of engineering experiments. One of their favorite experiments is building catapults. Nothing is as fun to them as launching things across the room, preferably at each other. We gave this project a fall twist by making a pumpkin catapult Fall STEM activity.
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Pumpkin Catapult Fall STEM Activity
Learn how to make your own pumpkin catapult using our simple directions.
What you’ll need for the pumpkin catapult:
Stack 8 craft sticks together and tie with pipe cleaners on two ends.
Tie 2 other craft sticks together on one end, then shove the craft sticks over the craft stick stack creating a wedge. Hold in place with another pipe cleaner.
Glue the bottle cap to the top side of the wedge and let dry.
Place a pumpkin inside the bottle cap. Stabilize the bottom of the catapult and pull the top piece back. Let go, and watch the pumpkin fly!
This becomes a Fall STEM activity when you give it goals. See if your kids can hit varying targets by moving the position of the craft sticks, altering how hard or gently they pull the pumpkin back, and using varying weights of pumpkins. With older kids, you can even introduce the concept of trajectories and dive a little deeper into the math behind catapults.
What are your favorite Fall activities?
Looking for more STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) projects and inspiration?
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