Sunday, November 9, 2014


I saw a S.T.E.M. post on building bridges from marshmallows and toothpicks.  I found it interesting and not too messy to try it at home.  So, off I went and bought two bags of mini-marshmallows and two 800 count boxes of toothpicks.  I figured we could use the extra on other projects.

I let the marshmallows air dry for several days.  This way they weren't sticky on the outside and had a bit of firmness to them.  While drying, the kids munched on a few here and there.  I had plenty, so no big deal.  In fact, I still have plenty!  Hmm...ideas to use for Christmas activities?

Yesterday, we made our bridges.  Yes, we!  I like to build things too and have fun with them.  So, I built my own bridge.

Before we began building, I asked them what they have learned about building bridges from Mr. Jack.  They both said together, "Triangles!"  Well, done, Mr. Jack for installing that into their brains.  They know that the basis of strong bridge architecture is that of triangles.  And with that, they set out building their bridges.

Little Man went for a more simple approach to his bridge.  Mainly, due to the fact, he wanted to go out and play basketball.

Egee took more time and effort.  She did a really good job.

I added a bottom set of triangles to mine to try and offer more support.  Egee thought I should have put more top support on the bridge.

We let the bridges set overnight and hoped that the marshmallows would dry and adhere to the toothpicks.  They did a bit, but we should have allowed them to dry for a couple days.

We then proceeded to test the bridges using pennies as our weight source.  Placing the bridge atop two cups, so it was suspended in the air, we began our test.

Little Man went first and his bridge held five pennies worth of weight.

Egee was next and her bridge held fourteen pennies.  Very good!

Mine came next and held fifteen pennies.  I think Egee was right, I should have placed the extra support on top.

We had fun with our little engineering experiment.  Now, time to find other things to build with our marshmallows and toothpicks!