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Garth Callaghan

Napkin Notes Dad




Problem Solving


The Napkin Notes Blog

Problem Solving

WGarth Callaghan

Emma was presented with a virtually impossible science project in middle school. 

1) Create a way to toss an egg out a 2nd story window and deliver the egg to the ground without cracking the shell.

2) The materials of the delivery vehicle must be biodegradable.

3) The delivery vehicle cannot deploy a parachute.

4) If the weight of the delivery vehicle is over 20 grams, the student starts to lose points regardless of the egg breaking or not.

To put this in perspective, Emma used only five toilet paper roll tubes and her delivery vehicle weighed 32 grams. We stripped away inch after inch of the toilet paper tubes until there was but a shell left. The egg would clearly crack. There was nothing left to protect it from the 2 story fall. 

I wasn't willing to give up, and I wanted to instill this same attribute within Emma. We put our thinking caps on and came up with a fantastic solution. 

Please see our picture for her solution. Her delivery vehicle now actually has positive lift, which is negative weight.

Needless to say, the teacher was less than pleased. I take it we were the first to implement this solution! 

Pack. Write. Connect.