Journeying Through the Modules

Hello my wonderful fellow readers!!!

My name is Karla Rodriguez, and I am an 8th grader here at the Ann Richards School. As an 8th grader, one of the biggest decision you have to make is choosing which pathway you will take the following year as a 9th grader. Ever since I was a little girl I’ve been fascinated with crafting and building and just that sort of stuff and when I heard that we had to make a choice between Media Tech, Engineering and Bio Med I automatically knew I wanted to take engineering.

The STEM and PLTW classes offered here are an amazing portal that allow us to pursuit what we find interesting ,thanks to our teachers of course. Eighth graders have a class called PLTW and in that class there are modules that we can choose to perform that are based on our future pathways, in my case engineering.

BridgeFor the first engineering module I did, me and my group had to construct a bridge that had to be  made out of only cotton string, toothpicks, and Elmer’s glue. Even though it sounds fairly easy there were actually quite a few complications. The first pieces we attempted to build were accidentally thrown away so we had to start over. Yes, we were upset, but this allowed us to start again and improve our building with the help of our previous mistakes. We eventually finished and our bridge wasn’t the best but it was still good for us.

The next module we did was called Construction and Fabrication Basics Wood Sandwichwhich is exactly what it sounds like. We had to assemble a Wood Sandwich (and no, it is not edible) which included sawing, nailing and screwing. There were about two parts which were very difficult to put in; the round head screw and the hex nut. For the round head screw, the drill wouldn’t go through the wood no matter what I did, it took a very long time Birdhousefor that to go in. I was also very stressed on putting the hex nut on. The nut wasn’t really the right size for the bolt, so I had to forcefully tighten it down, which took me a long time because I had to figure how to tighten it.  After we each made one sandwich, we had to create a right angle birdhouse which would benefit the lives of Native Texas birds. I honestly loved making the birdhouse because 1) I learned how to build a birdhouse, and 2) I was able to actually use power tools which is very cool.

Mechanical Systems is the module I am currently working on with my group at the momBevel Gearent. We have to put together certain gears according to our last names. We aren’t finished yet but so far we have completed putting the bevel gear together. I feel that the assembling itself is very easy but it takes a long time to actually find all of the parts we need and we don’t really have any instructions to go on, just pictures. The next challenge in this module is one that requires our group make a mechanism that will either beat an egg, turn three separate skewers over a flame at one time, or slice a piece of food into several pieces. This seems kind of complicated but we’ll handle it.

These are basically all of the engineering modules that I have done or will do and I’m looking forward to doing more, (maybe Materials next?).

Anyways, Thanks for reading and have a nice day!

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