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STEM builds bridges

St Augustine Academy was a hive of activity in the first week of July with nearly 200 year 5 pupils from three local Primary Schools enjoying  a fun packed day of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) activities.

During the day, the pupils from West Borough, St Michael’s and Kings Hill schools learnt about the first Ferris Wheel and were able to build their own using the KNEX construction system together with a motor to make it spin independently. They then attended 5 sessions about Forces led by year 9 St Augustine Academy students which included the use of spaghetti and marshmallows to illustrate the differences in strength between cubes and pyramids!  The day culminated in the challenge for the pupils to build bridges to cross a 1.2m span and hold a 1kg mass.  Each team was provided with 30 newspaper  ‘STIXX’ and 50 cable ties with which to build their bridge with the winning team’s bridge holding an amazing 16kg weight!  The hundreds of STIXX had been made by Academy students over the previous days out of a mountain of newspapers kindly donated by staff and the Kent Messenger without which the project would have collapsed – unlike some of the magnificent bridges made by the primary pupils!

Please check our gallery at the end of this term for a selection of photos for the event.