Reflection: Modeling Wind Turbine Blade Design Part 2: Brainstorm Solutions & Build a Prototype - Section 2: Engage


An important skill you're teaching in this lesson is accuracy and precision in communicating for drawing. This is a fundamental skill of engineers particularly in the design process. While most modern applications involve using computer-based drawing applications, the standards are nonetheless high and follow protocol.

I have used software such as Google SketchUp with students but find that the learning curve can take more time than it takes to teach students to draw their designs by hand. At the board, I model how this process should look. I begin by carefully drawing a large turbine blade then use a meter stick to model how to measure length and width and represent those with brackets outside of the drawing. I add annotations, such as areas where the dowel will connect, areas that I plan to stand, or reshape. I make sure to add in notes in the margins and include information such as name, class, date, and the scale of the drawing.

This helps make the expectations very clear to all students. Before I allow any student begin building their drawings must meet these high expectations. I have no problem requiring them to take the time to do a blueprint right the first time because in any future engineering tasks they will know the importance of the skill.

  High Expectations
  Modeling: High Expectations
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Wind Turbine Blade Design Part 2: Brainstorm Solutions & Build a Prototype

Unit 6: Engineering: Wind Turbines
Lesson 2 of 3

Objective: SWBAT to construct a model from design and test the efficiency of the prototype.

Big Idea: In this second lesson on wind turbine blade design, students construct and begin testing their designs.

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