Build a Boat

April 10, 2020

Here's an activity sure to float your boat (we hope) as you experiment buoyancy.

Tina Aryes presents a challenge to all creative engineers and designers (and those who want to be) to build a boat with common materials then test it out. 

Materials | Supplies

  • straws
  • felt/foam
  • popsicle sticks
  • corks
  • erasers
  • pool noodles
  • foam packaging
  • rubberbands
  • clothes pins
  • toothpicks
  • rocks, coins, sinkers
  • scissors

Concepts Explored

  • engineering
  • floatation
  • materials
  • problem-solving
  • creativity
  • buoyancy

Discovery Starters

Why did your boat float? Why not?

What can you do to make it more stable in the water?

Can your boat carry weight? Why?

How would you improve your boat? 

Explore Further

What other materials could you use to make a boat?

Why do you think steel boats float? 

Can you make a boat for a stream or creek? 

Additional Resources

PBS kids website: Nature Sailboat

YouTube video: Great Ocean Clean-up

Amazeum You Build a Boat Activity Guide