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Suck it up: Designing a contraption that sucks up debris

This unit is designed for 11-12 years old pupils. It relates to the science curriculum on Electricity.

In Lesson 1, the teacher introduces the engineering problem: there is some dust in the class room,can the students build their own small vacuum cleaners? The main activity is to solve this problem. To help the pupils the Engineering Design Process is introduced in lesson 1. The teacher starts with the “ASK” phase within the process cycle. What do the pupils need to know to solve this problem?

In Lesson 2, the students explore how a hairdryer works and how it can move the air. The students also explore how they can get the motor to work using electricity and howEDP-illustration to make a fan.  It is an opportunity to gather the necessary knowledge to let pupils create their own vacuum cleaner in the next lesson.

In Lesson 3, pupils are introduced to all the material that they can use in their challenge and then they start to “IMAGINE” design solution in small groups. They then “PLAN” and choose one solution and start to “CREATE” to design and construction their own vacuum cleaner. When the groups have constructed their first prototype they start to “IMPROVE” their vacuum cleaner. Thus  the pupils realise  that the planning and making is explicitly related to the Engineering Design Process

In Lesson 4, pupils discuss and look at all the different vacuum cleaners they have designed and discuss different improvements to their prototype. They also discuss the solutions the different groups have used and way they solved the problem.













>Click here to download the teacher guid – Electrical engineering and electrics

>Here are the trainings handbooks for facilitating an ENGINEER training for teachers

For further information, contact : Maria Adlerborn, Science Educator and Project manager, maria.adlerborn@