A spaghetti noodle can be stronger than expected when curious and creative minds apply engineering design principles to build them into bridges. Students in Ms. Jones’s grade 6 science class are competing in teams to design and build the strongest spaghetti bridge. 
First, they studied the three types of bridges: arch, beam and suspension bridges. Then they learned about piers, abutments and trusses, before diving into teams and designing bridges that they will test for strength next week.
Bridges are required to be at least 25 centimeters long, span a gap ten centimeters wide and will be tested for weight-bearing ability and design when they are completed next week.
    • Grade 6 students learned the three types of bridges and their supports before designing their spaghetti bridges.

    • Middle school science teacher Kat Jones encouraged them to work as a group to design and problem-solve.

    • The project requires creativity, collaboration...

    • ...and plenty of pasta and glue!

    • This team chose a beam bridge design.

    • This example uses the truss, capitalizing on the strength of the triangle.

The Barstow School

11511 State Line Road • Kansas City, MO 64114
P (816) 942-3255 • F (816) 942-3227