Engineering design challenges

Designed to spark an interest in STEM—and engineering in particular—while supporting remote learning, these design challenges have been created with a "build it" theme running throughout. These challenges provide students an opportunity to create and innovate as they work on projects that often have real-world significance or context. All of the design challenges use simple materials you can find at home.

Once your students have completed a design challenge, share some pictures of their creations online using the #NEM2021 or #NEGM2021 hashtag!

Engineers Canada thanks Engineers Geoscientists New Brunswick for creating these design challenges and allowing us to share them on ExploreEngineering.ca.

Build a boat

 

paper boat

Design a boat that can carry a cell phone or iPod (sealed in a plastic bag!) without sinking.

Crash test dummy

 

car

Design a car that can perform an incredible stunt AND keep its passenger safe from falling out of the vehicle or the impact of the crash.

Ferris wheel fun

 

Ferris wheel

Build a spinnable ferris wheel out of objects you find around the house, including the wheel, spokes, and seats.

 

Ice cube cooler

 

Ice cube cooler

Create a cooler that will keep an ice cube inside frozen longer than one outside of the cooler. 

Leg to stand on

 

Leg to stand on

Create a below-the-knee prosthetic out of household objects and use it to walk across a room.

Let's play tennis

 

Let's play tennis

Design a tennis racket out of household objects and use it to hit a ball to a target or to another person.

 
 

Package parachute

 

Package parachute

Create a parachute that will safely deliver a package from a height of 2 metres.

Paper shelf

 

Paper shelf

Create a structure out of only paper and tape that can hold 3 cans of soup.

Sandwhich sample

 

Sandwhich sample

Create a tool that allows you to take a sample of a sandwich and examine the different layers.

 
 

Space tool

 

Space tool

Create a tool that you could use to pick up an object that is 1 metre away from you on the ground.

Waterproof the roof

 

Waterproof the roof

Design a roof for a cardboard box that prevents the inside from getting wet when you pour water on it.

Water sample

 

Water sample

Create a water bottle sensor-holder that will be suspended in the water, neither floating to the top nor sinking to the bottom.