Episode 12: Building Bridges

 In this lesson,  your young engineers will design and test out a variety of bridge designs to help keep animals and humans safe on a busy highway that traverses Paper Town, USA.

  • Watch the video below

  • Design 3 models of bridges to test out. 

  • Build your models using the guide below

  • Test your models to find the strongest

  • Take photos and share to be featured

  • materials: cardboard, tape, scissors, animal characters, weights (water bottles work well),  books or boxes of equal height for the supporting the bridge, paper and pencil for note taking.

Watch the story...

Download drafting paper

draft paper download


  • If you do not have 3DuxDesign cardboard, help your bridge engineer make at least 10 strips of cardboard about 1 1/2" X 10" . Each strip should be the same width. For all but one strip, keep the corrugation vertical.for better structure. You may want to cut one strip with corrugation horizontal for your engineer to test the difference
  • Help your engineer set up two Abutments (mountains). They should be of equal height and should have a measured and consistent spam during each test. 
  • Test the strength of each bridge design by slowly adding increasing weight until the bridge collapses. One easy way to do this is with a water bottle that is marked at regular intervals with numbers. Add a measured amount of water with each attempt until collapse.
  • Have your engineer determine the best bridge design and then create the final version with decorations.

Bridge Vocabulary

  • Deck - the road going across the bridge. 
  • Beam bridge - simple solid flat material across the complete span of the bridge
  • Span - the distance between abutments or supports (as of a bridge); or the distance between two points 
  • Abutment / tower - the supports at either end of a bridge span 
  • Piers - a support in the center
  • Truss - bridge with triangular supports
  • Arch- a bridge with rounded support 
  • Load- any force that acts upon a structure; weight

get materials for this project and more

GO-Pack Maker Kit
gobox - classroom kit

To be featured, please submit high quality photos, detailed description of your project and/or a link to your own youtube video. If you have a great idea for a lesson and want to be a guest host, let us know.

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stem with friends remote playdates

3DuxDesign wants to help keep kids connected. let us host a STEM With Friends Remote Playdate. Send each friend a kit and we will schedule a free design/build activity for you  and 5-10 of your besties  

Contact marci@3duxdesign.com for details

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