Getting Started with Engineering: Think Like an Engineer!

Getting Started with Engineering: Think Like an Engineer!

by Camille McCue


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Fun engineering projects for kids

Does your kid's love of 'tinkering' resemble that of a budding Thomas Edison? Then Getting Started with Engineering is guaranteed to spark their fascination! The focused, easy-to-complete projects offered inside are designed to broaden their understanding of basic engineering principles, challenge their problem-solving skills, and sharpen their creativity—all while having fun along the way.

Engineers are experts on how things work—and this book is your youngster's best first step to developing the skills they need to think, design, and build things like the pros. The projects they'll complete feature a fun twist that appeal to their age group—from a tiny model roller coaster to a wearable toy that includes an electronic circuit—and the instructions are written in an easy-to-follow manner, making it possible for them to experience the pride and accomplishment of working independently.

  • Appropriate for children aged 7-11
  • Simple explanations guide children to complete three projects using household items
  • The full-color design, short page count, and easy-to-follow instructions are designed to appeal to kids
  • Brought to you by the trusted For Dummies brand

If you have a little engineer that could, Getting Started with Engineering is a great way to encourage their fascination of figuring out how things work.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781119291220
Publisher: Wiley
Publication date: 06/27/2016
Series: Wiley's Kids for Dummies Series
Pages: 128
Sales rank: 747,382
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range: 7 - 11 Years

About the Author

Camille McCue, Ph.D, is a veteran STEM educator who has teletaught for NASA and PBS and instructed math, tech, and engineering in the classroom. She currently teaches in Las Vegas, NV.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

About This Book 1

About You 3

About the Icons 4

The First Step 4

Project 1: Engineering 101 5

What Is Engineering? 5

Where Do Engineers Work? 5

What Are Some Engineering Fields? 6

What Is the Engineering Design Cycle? 7

What Does a Design Look Like? 8

What Is the Golden Rule of Engineering? 10

What Is the Iron Triangle of Engineering? 10

Mini Project: Classic Pocket Rocket 12

Project 2: Touchdown Mars 13

Introduction to Planetary Landers 13

Materials 15

Simulate a Landing with Technology 16

Play with a descent to Mars 16

Control a descent to Mars 18

Design Your Mars Lander 19

Build Your Mars Lander 21

Test Your Mars Lander 24

Improve Your Mars Lander 25

Aerospace Engineering and the Iron Triangle 25

Project 3: The Clock Is Ticking 27

All Here, In Order, On Time Let's Go! 27

Materials 29

Simulate a Simple Logistics Process 30

Simulate a More Complex Logistics Process 32

Plan Your Industrial Engineering Process 34

Plan with a Gantt chart 34

Plan by acting it out 36

Implement Your Logistical Plan 37

Evaluate Your Success 39

Improve Your Process 39

Iron Triangle of Engineering 40

Gantt Charting with a Spreadsheet 40

Project 4: Squeaky Clean Up 42

Introduction to Oil Spill Clean Ups 42

Materials 44

Plan Your Oil Spill Clean-Up Process 45

Plan to contain the oil 46

Plan to skim the oil 46

Plan to use sorbents 46

Plan to disperse the oil 47

Sketch your process 48

Implement Your Clean-Up Process 49

Simulate the oil spill 49

Execute your clean-up plan 50

Evaluate Your Success 51

Improve Your Process 52

Iron Triangle of Engineering 53

Mini Project: Cleaning Feathers and Fur 54

Project 5: Load the Bridge 55

Civil Engineers Build the World 56

Introduction to Bridges 56

Materials 58

Model Your Bridge with Technology 58

Design Your Truss Bridge 63

Build Your Pasta Bridge 66

Test Your Pasta Bridge 68

Improve Your Bridge 70

Civil Engineering and the Iron Triangle 70

Project 6: Electric Alien Cap 73

Electronics 101 73

Electrical circuits 74

Symbols and schematics 74

Series and parallel circuits 75

Materials 77

Design Your Electric Alien Cap 79

Build Your Cap 80

Get your components ready 80

Mark your circuit onto the hat 81

Stitch the positive connections in your circuit 81

Stitch the ground connections in your circuit 83

Test Your Circuit 85

Improve Your Cap 85

Electrical Engineering and the Iron Triangle 85

Project 7: Now You're Cooking! 88

Early Mechanical Engineering 88

Archimedes the engineer 89

Energy everywhere 90

The First Law of Thermodynamics 90

Materials 91

Design Your Solar Oven 92

The Second Law of Thermodynamics 92

Oven design criteria 92

Build Your Design 94

Build the food chamber 94

Add the oven insulation 95

Attach the solar reflector 97

Test Your Design Plan 98

Improve Your Cooker 99

Solar Cooking and the Iron Triangle 100

Mini Project: Vdara Death Ray 102

Project 8: Roller Coaster Mania 103

Introduction to Roller Coasters 104

Mass in a roller coaster system 105

Energy in a roller coaster system 105

Materials 106

Model Your Coaster with Technology 106

Design Your Roller Coaster 112

Build Your Roller Coaster 113

Test Your Roller Coaster 116

Improve Your Roller Coaster 117

Entertainment Engineering and the Iron Triangle 117

Appendix: Cool Tools (and More!) 120

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