Tonight Group 1 had a slightly different class experience. Like the TV show “Junkyard Wars” we had our own “Junk Box Wars” competition. The goal of the challenge was to make the longest, strongest chain possible in the time given. Participants worked in groups of two or three, making links out of their junk bag. Some of the materials they were able to use included straws, pipe cleaners, string, paper clips, rubber bands, paper, index cards, and masking tape. They were only able to use what was in their bag.
After some time to build their chains, each team came up to the front of the room. They received points for the length of their chain (1 inch = 1 point) and for the number of weights their chain would hold. Several chains were over 100 inches long! As they held the two ends of their chain 1 yard off of the floor, weights were added one at a time (100g, 200g, etc.) until the weights touched the floor or the chain broke. The “Never Give Up” team (Scott N. and John H.) won the competition. Though their chain wasn’t as long as some of the others, it held four of the five weights before it broke! Chelsea and Hannah, “The Darkest Night,” came in right behind in second place. Their chain held three of the weights before it broke.
Group 2 had Sheana for class tonight and she brought along a guest speaker. Mark Bixby, an electrical lineman, came to speak to us about how electricity is generated, how it travels from power plants to our homes, and what safety procedures linemen use. We all had the opportunity to try on a hard hat with a protective visor and the large rubber gloves worn by a lineman. We tried to tighten a nut onto a bolt using the rubber gloves and found it was not very easy! We couldn’t imagine trying to work 30 feet in the air with the rubber gloves on and complete the very dangerous work of a lineman! Thank you for sharing your knowledge and equipment with us, Mark!