STEAM Projects Using Cardboard Boxes

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STEAM (Science, technology, engineering, art and maths) learning is commonly considered one of the best ways to prepare students for their future careers.  As cardboard boxes (and any container for that matter) are so commonplace, I have been keen to put together some STEAM projects for students which make use of these easy to find raw materials.  In this way, simple boxes that make their way into households and schools can be reused, recycled and even “upcycled”!

I have found The Zoom Fly Bolt Blast STEAM Handbook by Lance Akiyana to be very useful for providing some ideas for fun projects, which can satisfy children’s curiosity while giving them opportunities to adopt an “innovator’s mindset”, to solve practical problems.

According to Lance Akiyana, ‘the innovator’s mindset has five elements (be visionary, be courageous, be collaborative, be determined, and be reflective) that support breakthrough thinking and creative work.’

The projects can all be seen to follow an iterative process:

1. DESIGN > 2. CREATE > 3. TEST > 4. EVALUATE > 5. REDESIGN

Among some of the projects I’ve had a go at myself, I’ve managed to build the following:

Cardboard Steam Projects.  From  left to right: a robotic hand, a magnetic scene, a suspension bridge and a grabber.

Cardboard Steam Projects. From left to right: a robotic hand, a magnetic scene, a suspension bridge and a grabber.

I’ve included a few videos below, which give step-by-step instructions for teachers and students on how these projects were built.  You can find more ideas and online STEAM activities from my STEAM webpage here.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Will Fastiggi
Originally from England, Will is an Upper Primary Coordinator now living in Brazil. He is passionate about making the most of technology to enrich the education of students.
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