Materials List: Materials Properties Make a Difference

Each group needs:

  • a variety of test materials, such as cardboard, Styrofoam (such as packing peanuts), white paper, wooden Popsicle sticks, cotton balls, plastic wrap, plus any other potential model building materials of your choice that provide a range of measurements using sound, light and temperature sensors, as well as hardness and water tests
  • LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT Base Set; this kit includes light and sound sensors, NXT Intelligent Brick, LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT software, including the Data Logging tool, which is used in this activity; the LEGO brick is equipped with programs to show readings from different sensors
  • Client Design Requirements Sheet, a list of requirements and a description of the environment that each group's house needs to be designed for, created in advance by the teacher, three examples are provided on this attachment, to get the teacher started
  • very hot water in a small cup, for the thermal conductivity test
  • a cup of water on a tray, for the water resistance test
  • sharp pencils, for the hardness test
  • sink and paper towels, for clean-up of water test
  • glue, tape, scissors and paper, to make testing enclosures of the different materials

To share with the entire class:

  • LEGO temperature sensor;¬†alternatively, if not available, use a thermometer and manually take readings at regular intervals