20+ Fun Ideas for a STEM Project!
I started as a science teacher and have been designing and implementing STEM project ideas for over a decade. Check out the resources that are available below!
Here are some ideas that will help you create a fun and creative STEM project in your classroom.
Using hands-on activities is a great way to keep students engaged while they’re learning. For example, have students build models or create experiments using everyday objects. You can also give students challenges such as building an invention that helps solve an everyday problem or constructing something with limited materials. This type of activity encourages students to think outside the box and get creative with their solutions.
Ideas for a STEM project available from Puzzle Shift Create
There are many more ideas for a STEM project available on this site, above is just a sample.
Integrating digital projects into your lessons is another great way to get creative with your STEM curriculum. Have students work together in teams or individually to create digital projects related to the topic at hand. Examples of digital projects include coding apps, games, websites, videos, animations, podcasts, etc.; all of which can be created using free online tools like Scratch or Codeacademy. This type of exercise will allow them to apply what they’ve learned in class while giving them freedom to express themselves creatively—a win/win situation!
Digital projects available from Puzzle Shift Create
Does your school have any old robotics kits laying around? They very well might.
Put your students’ engineering skills to the test by having them build a robot! This project is great for teaching kids how to design, create, test, and troubleshoot robots. You can make the challenge even more interesting by having the students compete against each other in a robotics competition. The winner can be judged based on criteria like speed, accuracy, and creativity. Lego has all the software for programming their old kits.
Classic ideas for a STEM Project: Rube Goldberg Machine
A Rube Goldberg machine is an overly complicated contraption that performs a simple task. This project is perfect for teaching kids about cause-and-effect relationships and it encourages out-of-the-box thinking. For example, have your students design a machine that turns on a light switch or sets off an alarm clock. They can use everyday items such as dominos, marbles, rubber bands, etc. to build their machine.
Popsicle Stick Bridge
In this project, have your students build bridges using popsicle sticks and other materials like tape or glue. Discuss concepts such as tension, compression, weight distribution and load capacity while building the bridge together as a class. Once it’s complete, have each student take turns testing its strength by putting weights on top of the bridge until it collapses!
Even better: Popsicle stick engineering
If you can drill a hole in the popsicle sticks, the sky is the limit! In the Innovative Arts classroom, we have vices and drills that students can use after a safety test.
Performing experiments is an excellent way to teach STEM concepts in a fun and interactive way. Have students design their own experiments or use pre-made experiments from various sources online. Provide materials for them to conduct their experiments and watch as they come up with interesting results based on their findings. Experiments can also be used for reviewing previous lessons or teaching new concepts in a more tangible manner than lectures alone.
Experiment ideas for a STEM Project:
Testing insulation types
As a science teacher we did lots of experiments in my class! A simple one was to test different insulations around ice-cold cans of soda pop. Tin foil, paper towels, cotton and wool socks. Over the class period, collect data on how quickly the cans warmed up.
Using that data, students could design ‘penguin homes’ that are meant to keep ‘penguins’ (ice cubes) cold for as long as possible.
Creative STEM projects are an excellent way to engage and inspire your students while teaching them valuable problem solving skills. From robotics challenges to building popsicle stick bridges—there are plenty of options when it comes to creative STEM activities for the classroom! Give one of these ideas a try today—you won’t be disappointed!
I am creating this site to advance student creativity and help students to take ownership of their learning. The resources on this site are intentionally open-ended and a part of my Innovative Arts curriculum.