Girl Scouts earn their engineering patch
More than 30 members of the Girl Scouts of Central Maryland spent a day at Johns Hopkins University last weekend thinking like engineers as they designed and built miniature roller coasters out of cardboard boxes, insulation tubing, pipe cleaners, cups, tape, and other everyday materials.
Through this fun and competitive activity, the middle school-aged troop members learned the basic physics of roller coasters. They worked with a dozen engineering students from Johns Hopkins to build five-foot tracks with as many “thrill” elements as possible: hills, tunnels, helixes, in-line twists, vertical loops, and banked curves.
At the end of the day, teams showed off their designs by launching a marble down the tracks they had just built.
Sridevi Sarma, associate professor of biomedical engineering and associate director of the Institute for Computational Medicine, hosted the event with the support of a L’Oréal USA Changing the Face of STEM mentoring grant.