STEAM Labs class has assembled complex machines

Jessica Smith
Jessica Smith

Welcome to our laboratory where the sky is the limit! We have been building behind glass walls where curious eyes ponder: Why is there a curtain? Where does that ramp go? What is the caution tape for? Who created that? How do all the pieces fit together?

This is just what we do. We have discussed, set expectations, brainstormed until it hurt, planned, collaborated, built, observed, tested, calculated, failed, intervened, re-envisioned, rebuilt, re-tested, and finally tasted sweet success! As each day passed, we added new dimensions: Legos, NXT bricks, sounds, music, paint, pictures, logos, videos, animation, and, most importantly, power tools. Wait, let’s not forget the fix all, can do all, don’t leave home without it… that’s right, it’s the mighty duct tape.

We have engineered our way into a full blown mighty STEAM Machine! Come and check this out on Saturday, July 11th, at 10 a.m. We can’t wait to let this thing run full STEAM ahead!

Besides building awesome machines, we also took a journey through the making of a Corvette at the Corvette Assembly Plant, where custom designs are brought to life. After that, we proceeded to break it down even further as we got an exclusive, VIP inside look into the making of aluminum engine components at the Trace Die Cast plant. We got to see the aluminum melted, pressed into molds, refined, and finally quality checked via X-ray and precise measurements.

This experience has been once in a lifetime and only true engineers can appreciate the dedication and ingenuity that goes into the designing process. It has been a pleasure to work with these aspiring engineers as I have watched them grow and develop, and I’ve seen them create amazing things. I also have a new appreciation for the incredible way some of them have solved various problems such as (but not limited to): taping one side of dominos to ensure quick setup every time, programming the NXT to rewind the flag automatically after unwinding, and the Lego drawbridge that kept the zombies out. I hope their creations can inspire future STEAM Machine makers!

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