After reading Iggy Peck Architect by Andrea Beaty my students participated in a STEM building activity. They used toothpicks and Play-Doh to make structures. Iggy Peck is an imaginative boy that loves to build. Second grade was almost ruined for him when his teacher refuses to let Iggy build because of the fears she developed in elementary school. Iggy, however, gets his time to shine and show off his ingenuity when his teacher has a near disaster on a class field trip. Luckily, Iggy saves the day and he grows up to be a famous architect. This book supports the creative ideas that students come up with in Makerspace and therefore lends itself to STEM activities.  

STEM Building Activity

Building Towers:

 

After hearing the story of Iggy Peck I have my students do a STEM building activity. There are many ways to do this. If students are in our Makerspace Lab I let them make towers or bridges with all the supplies I have in our Makerspace such as clothespins, popsicle sticks, cardboard, yarn, toilet paper tubes, masking tape, and hot glue. For this project, I’m sending home a packet with the students when they check out Iggy Peck Architect. They will make their towers at home. I encourage them to take a picture of their finished project and email it to me. When they are finished with the book they will return the book to the library, but they will keep the supplies.

Supplies For A Take Home STEM Kit:

  • A small Ziplock bag
  • A small container of Play-Doh 
  • 20 toothpicks 
Play-Doh & Toothpicks
The STEM kit is ready to go home.

Build A Tower 

In the story, Iggy Peck built towers out of things he found including stinky diapers. Luckily, I didn’t send home any diapers just Play-Doh and toothpicks. The Students’ challenge is to see what they can build with just these two things.

A tower built with toothpicks & Play-Doh.

Information For Your Students

I send home the following information with my students.

  • Be careful with your Play-Doh. 
  • Pick a good place to make your tower. 
  • Don’t make your tower on the carpet. 
  • Open your Play-Doh and pinch off a small piece. Roll your small piece of Play-Doh into a little ball. Use the little balls as the anchors or as a base for your tower. 
  • Use your imagination and see what kind of tower your can make. 
  • When you have a tower you love ask your parents if you can take a picture of it and email it to me. 
  • If you want to reuse the Play-Doh, disassemble your tower and put the Play-Doh back in its container. It will dry out if it isn’t sealed. 
  • Have fun.
  • Fill out the tower building follow-up paper.
  • Return the book back to the library and check out another book.

Tower Building Follow-Up

 

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