Reflection: Coherence Valentine Mailbox Design - Part 1 - Section 4: Mailbox Design


I decided to let students select their box before drawing their diagram because I wanted their design to address the materials they would be using to make their mailbox. I laid the assorted boxes on the floor and called 5-6 students at a time to choose their box.

Some students chose to trace the side and top view of their boxes and then include the 'mailbox criteria'. This worked well with the students.

As for the slot measurements, this became a moot point for some designers as they made slots that would allow the mail to be dropped in as well as taken out, so there was no need to take measurements on the slot.

Next time I will ask the students to include their mail openings measurements on their diagram after they make the openings on the box. Also, I will pass out assorted size envelopes and cards so students have a reference when deciding the size of their mail slot.

For some students it was tricky for them to explain what would keep the box from tipping over. Some wrote the base was square. Other students did not address this criteria on their diagram. Which is another reason I decided to let them choose their box before drawing their diagram to give them an opportunity to explore shapes and proportion of the boxes. Most students successfully met this criteria, but could not clearly explain why their box worked.

  Coherence: Ideal vs Diagram Reality
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Valentine Mailbox Design - Part 1

Unit 6: Engineering Opportunities
Lesson 1 of 5

Objective: SWBAT set criteria for a new improved Valentine Boxes and create individual blueprints to use when they build their Valentine Boxes in the next lesson.

Big Idea: Students explore the steps of an engineer when they design, build and evaluate individual Valentine mailbox designs.

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valentine box
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