Medieval war machines that once inspired fear now inspire awe and interest in students. In this three-week unit, students learn about the history of medieval siege machines, then build and experiment with two such mechanisms. Students build and use a catapult to learn about relating speed with projectile mass, testing elasticity, and designing to make the catapult a mobile mechanism and to launch a projectile the greatest distance. Then, the class moves on to the catapult’s cousin, the trebuchet. With this siege machine using counterweights, students explore how projectile mass affects a launch and how to calculate potential energy. Then, they are challenged to use their knowledge to adjust projectile and counterweight masses in order to hit a target.
Interested in purchasing storage for your STEM Unit? We recommend the addition of one Clear Storage Bin with Lid, one Large Blue Bin, and one Jumbo Blue Bin to help make storing your STEM Unit supplies a breeze!