Fun Foundations

Civil Engineering

Program ● Interactive ● Grades PK-2

Beyond Trains

In the introductory lesson, Beyond Trains - The Other Engineers, students will explore the job of an engineer through discussion and active participation. They will learn that engineers perform a variety of jobs for the community and world. And most don’t even require train tracks!

This lesson has also been used as a camp lesson
Camp: Medieval Defense Camp (Junior Engineering of Medieval Times)
      Lesson Name: Build a Castle

Home Sweet Home

Structural components like roof, window, door, floor and walls are things that are used but not really noticed. This lesson is designed to expose them to these ideas and parts in a fun and creative way. In this lesson students will discuss the key structural components of a home, read a short story, and create their very own home using LEGOs.

This lesson has also been used as a extension to Beyond Trains
This lesson has also been used as a camp lesson
Camp: Medieval Defense Camp (Junior Engineering of Medieval Times)
      Lesson Name: Build a Castle

Scraping the Sky

In the Scraping the Sky lesson, students will investigate the basics of skyscraper construction. Students will have the opportunity to construct a skyscraper individually and as a group using a variety of materials. Then, students will have an opportunity to construction their own skyscrapers and test them against a powerful windstorm.

Extension: Scraping the Sky, Part 2

In the Scraping the Sky lesson extension, students will overview how skyscrapers are created before designing, testing, and modifying a skyscraper to withstand strong wind gusts through the application of learned concepts.

Columns and Arches

In this lesson, students work to create their own column structure that can hold their own weight. In the lesson extension, students explore arches and the unique way they’re built using a keystone as they create their very own yummy arch out of graham crackers and marshmallow fluff.

Extension: Arches

In this lesson extension, students will discuss how tension is involved in arch construction before constructing their own arch using the engineering design process.

Over the River & Extension: Elephants on a Bridge

During the Over the River lesson, students will examine attributes of two types of bridges: beam and truss. Students will attempt to build a strong truss bridge using some delicious materials! During the lesson extension, students will take the bridges they created in the previous lesson and test their strength.

This lesson's extension is NOT a stand alone lesson
The Elephants on a Bridge extension can only be completed after students have done Over the River lesson. 
This lesson has also been used as a camp lesson
Camp: Medieval Defense Camp (Junior Engineering of Medieval Times)
      Lesson Name: Crossing the Moat
Camp: Wings, Wheels, and Sails Camp
      Lesson Name: Over the River

Building Roads

Thomas the Train and Disney’s movie Cars highlight how mesmerizing transportation is to children. Roads and Tunnels explores how civil engineers work together to plan and build roads and tunnels across various terrains.

This lesson has also been used as a camp lesson 
Camp: Wings, Wheels, and Sails Camp
      Lesson Name: Rolling Rambler and Roads
Camp: Engineers Under Construction
      Lesson Name: Roads and Tunnels

Extension: Tunneling

In this lesson extension, students will start by exploring the concept of arches and identify places in the community where arches can be found. They will create a tunnel that will allow a toy car to pass underneath.

High and Dry

Fairy tale princesses are often housed in towers designed to keep them safe because they are tall and solid. These characteristics prove to be challenging for those who attempt to visit the princess and it helps keep them out unwanted visitors. Locked away in a tower, Rapunzel has become bored and lonely until a prince has found his way up the tower using her hair. In this lesson, students will explore geometric shapes to construct a secure tower for Rapunzel.

This lesson has been solely used for Camp so far
Camp: Twisted Fairy Tales (link)
      Lesson Name: High and Dry

I’ll Huff and I’ll Puff

During the final Junior Civil Engineering lesson, students will use the principles they have learned in the previous five lessons about designing, building, and testing structures to create a model of a house that will be able to withstand the huffing and puffing of The Big, Bad Wolf!

I’ll Huff and I’ll Puff Extension

During the final Junior Civil Engineering lesson, students will use the principles they have learned in the previous five lessons about designing, building, and testing structures to create a model of a house that will be able to withstand the huffing and puffing of The Big, Bad Wolf!

This lesson can be used as either a extension to I'll Huff and I'll Puff or a stand alone lesson