Straw Bridge Challenge



This is an introductory activity to a bridge design unit. Students work in teams to design and build a bridge using plastic drinking straws and masking tape. The bridge that supports the most weight wins.

By Nancy Brown

Lesson Time

1 block class period
100 Minutes

Industries / Subjects / Grades

Industries / Pathways
  • Engineering & Architecture Engineering & Architecture

Standards and Objectives


California Academic Content Standards (2)
California's 2008 CTE Standards (5)

Related Instructional Objectives (SWBAT...)

  • Students will represent a design concept by creating a sketch of their bridge design.
  • Students will evaluate team members' bridge designs, choose the best design, and justify the choice based on the criteria and constraints of the assigned challenge.
  • Students will build a prototype of their bridge design and test it by applying a weight load.

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