Thursday, 27 March 2014

Rube Goldberg Technology - Our journey

Our technology inquiry is all about Rube Goldberg machines. These are large machines made up of small components that ends with a easy function - like, a golfball in a cup, a balloon popping or a bell ringing. Our small simple machines that we've been focusing on in Room 17 so far are inclined planes and levers.

It's a long process to make a successful machine, as we found out with our first task of making one that ends with a golfball in a cup. Our criteria for this first machine was to;

  • end with a golfball in a cup
  • use an inclined plane
  • use dominoes
  • use marble

We played with materials, we designed machines and we failed, but we learnt lots! Reflecting on this task we decided on a few things that contributed to our failure.

So, we simplified things in our next attempt at this machine and some of our groups made a successful machine!

Some groups also came very, very close to a winner.

and after some tweaks, finally got it!

The next chapter.
Our next Rube Goldberg machine is a little bit more complicated. The criteria is;
  • end with a balloon popping
  • use an inclined plane
  • use dominoes
  • use 2 marbles
  • make a new component that will be a working part of your machine (we chose levers as a class)

We're only in the planning stages at the moment, but boy have we come up with some good ideas!

Keep watching this space to see how the rest of our journey goes.


  1. I will definitely be 'watching this space'. Fascinating stuff, Room 17!

  2. i LIKE your writing ROOM17!


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