We tried several Egg Drop Project design ideas, each with a different material limitation, some limited materials with straws, and some limited to paper. Today’s Egg Drop Project design challenge is another idea we came up with while doing a different paper project. So this is our 2nd idea on paper only Egg Drop Project design. Compared to the last paper only Egg Drop Project design, this one should sustain a stronger impact and greater drop height.
Why We Like Egg Drop Project
As you can see we’ve done Egg Drop Challenges many times and each time experimented with different material limitations. We love the project for so many reasons:
Egg drop projects don’t require any equipment or many materials. You just need eggs, and whatever materials you have on hand.
Egg drop experiment requires engineering thinking, teaches kids the engineering design process, and encourages them to follow the process.
Note: You can download the free Engineering Design Process at the bottom of this post.
Egg drop challenge is hands-on. No matter how great the design idea is in theory, students have to make the idea into reality.
Egg drop projects can be adapted to different age groups based on students’ knowledge and skill levels. Instructors can set different criteria on material selection, drop height, time spent on design and device production, etc. to set the difficulty levels.
Egg drop project is a team-building activity. Although it can be an individual project, it is more fun as a team project. Students can learn how to work as a team.
Kids can have egg meals after the activity. We always save our broken eggs by wrapping the eggs in plastic food wrap before dropping the eggs. Be the end of the day, we unwrap the eggs into a bowl to make a big scrabbled egg.
Other Egg Drop Experiment Design Ideas
Each of the above designs sustained a drop from the window of the 2nd story of a typical building. Of course, each design experienced many iterations of trial and error. You can read about our experiments and engineering design learning from the linked posts above.
The Second Design Idea for Egg Drop Project with Paper Only
The idea came from another paper engineering project – making a parachute with paper. If we connect a paper parachute with the paper structure design from our first paper-only egg drop project design, it should help further reduce the impact force when the egg touches the ground. In theory, it should enable the drop from a much greater height.
With this thinking, we attached the two strips of the parachute we made to the sides at the top of the paper funnel to make a new device. We then put the egg that was wrapped in the plastic wrapper for a first try.
We started the first drop from the 2nd-floor window. It was a success!
We tried another drop from the 3rd-floor window. The egg survived with no cracks!
We tried one more from the roof of a 3-floor building. The egg again landed on the ground without any cracks.
The Third Design Idea for Egg Drop Project with Paper Only
After we tried the combination of paper parachute and paper funnel, we ask ourselves, how about just using the parachute with the funnel?
We make a paper container that holds the egg. We then taped the strips of the parachute to the sides of the small container.
We drop the device with a wrapped egg in it from the window of the 2nd-floor window. It worked. The egg did not break at all.
We then tried from the 3rd-floor window. It was again a success!
Why the Paper Parachute Design Succeeded
For why we used the paper funnel and why it worked, please visit the articles Successful Egg Drop Project Design with Paper Only – Paper Funnel and Successful Egg Drop Project Design with Straw and Paper. In the two posts, we explained in very detail our design and thinking process, and the reason for all the adjustments we made.
As to the parachute part, it is easy to understand why it helped prevent the eggs from breaking. As the parachute falls down, the resistance from the air slowed down the speed of falling, thus reduced the force when the egg touched the group. We explained the relationship between gravity and air resistance in more detail in the post How to Make Paper Parachute.
Further Experimenting Ideas Egg Drop Design with Paper Only
There are many more science topics kids can explore based on the design. For example:
If the parachute canopy is doubled or halved, will the egg break?
What is the maximum height the device can still protect the egg from breaking?
Does the thickness of the paper have any impact on the effectiveness of the device? How can you design an experiment to answer these questions?
Engineering Design Process
This egg drop challenge is a great engineering design project for kids of all ages. It is a good activity to teach kids the engineering design process. We have developed a template for the process to guide kids in the process. You can download it for free. All you need do is enter your email address in the form below so we know where to send it to you.
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