The "Urban Oasis" project with Capitol Prep Harbor school
We were thrilled to host a 3Dux/design Competition at the Capitol Prep Harbor School in our hometown Bridgeport, CT. For these 6th graders, it was their first STEAM Lab Expo and it was an honor for us to have the opportunity to offer the 6th grade class and introduction to STEAM education.
The project started with a prompt. "Help design and build a model of The 2050 Bridgeport". Student teams were instructed to
think about their community as it exists now and how they would design buildings/homes in the future to improve the lives of people in the city.
think about how you would make your building
Using 3Dux/design connectors, cardboard, and other recycled household materials, build your structure
Create a 5 minute presentation of your structure
Students were given the prompt with one month to prepare their project. During that time, students had to do their own research, brainstorming, collaborating and experimenting. They needed to prepare and practice their presentations.
For the big event, 3Dux/design crew invited our friends at the University of Bridgeport to judge the competition. Here are some highlights from the event.
Team Yellow: The Power Grid
This group worked hard to create the solar powered Bridgeport Power Grid which connected to every other structure built for the event. This amazingly tall (5 story) cardboard structure was surprisingly stable (a tribute to the team’s engineering talents and our 3D printed connectors
) and was fully equipped with solar panels to supply the entire city with clean power for years to come. This team won the award for the most well prepared presentation.
Team Orange: A tree grows in Bridgeport
This group made use of 3Dux/design orange connectors, cardboard, construction paper and aluminum foil to create a home with solar panels for generating electricity and an enclosed garden. The group quite adeptly explained how plants in the yard help with thermoregulation within the home, help improve air quality, supply oxygen and help offset the greenhouse effect.
Team Green- Adding some style to Downtown Bridgeport
This energetic team focused on the importance of aesthetics in a community, understanding that a beautiful community can lift our spirits and improve our lives. Beyond the use of aluminum foil for solar panels for sustainability, they made use of the shiny nature of this material to beautify their home. A splash of purple and blue paint on the cardboard walls and they clearly had the best-dressed house in town. Team orange also informed the judges that because this home is so beautiful and reflective, there’s need to decorate for Christmas, This makes their design cost-effective thereby saving money for gifts! (multi-functional aluminum foil - we love that)
Team Red- Water Weight
Read this before you judge. This seemingly rickety roof is actually a mechanical masterpiece. As team red told us, this roof is specifically designed to “collapse” under water weight to track and collect fresh rain water, a vital and preciously limited natural resource. They went on to inform the judges that their innovative off-the-grid design helps nourish the humans inside the home as well as the plants outside. The 3Dux/design team liked this flexible roof and may need to design some hinged connectors in the near future.
Team zero- breaking the rules but not the house
While this team decided not to use 3Dux/design connectors in their home, we have to give them credit for using their autonomy and freedom of choice to build this beautiful and super-space efficient single-family home. Using popsicle sticks glue and paint, this team was meticulous in their attention to details. (We were suspicious that they really just wanted to eat all those popsicles)
We had a tough time judging this event. With so many wonderfully innovative and thoughtful designs it was hard to pick a winner. After the students were done with their presentations, they gave us a standing ovation! (Actually, that is really because we surprised them with pizza).
Want a Design Challenge at your program? Contact us for details. Too far for us to travel? No worries, this is the 21st century, we can always do a live feed event (minus the pizza).