Brewster Museum of Natural History – Rube Goldberg Machine

BY Elizabeth Bewick

 Cape Cod Regional Technical High School 

Project Description

The Museum of Natural History in Brewster has been invited to be part of the Cambridge Science Festival.  This festival is held during April school vacation.  Only 9 other sites in Massachusetts have been selected.  During this week, the museum will have an exhibit for the Cambridge Science Festival.  They will also have several exhibits relating to STEM and a Rube Goldberg machine.  The Engineering Technology shop at Cape Cod Regional Technical High School has been asked to create this machine.  This machine will demonstrate mechanisms as well as include elements that represent Cape Cod.  Although the festival only lasts a week,  the Rube Goldberg machine will stay in the museum for a year.

This machine will also be viewed by children all over Cape Cod as well as visitors to the Cape.  It therefor needs to be entertaining, educational and sturdy.

How will the project be evaluated (e.g. how will you gauge its success)

The project will be successful if it works consistently and it is approved by the museum.

Benefit to the students and the school

Although most people don’t realize it, a Rube Goldberg machine is a true feat of engineering.  This project will be an engineering challenge for our students. It is even more challenging than most machines because it needs to be resetting and revolve around Cape Cod nature.  Not only does this project teach the students about engineering but it will also teach them about communicating with a real client and making and meeting deadlines.

This project will be a benefit to the school because it will reflect to the public the quality and types of education that students receive at Cape Cod Tech.

Timeline of Project (when will you do the project, if applicable)

A working model of the machine needs to be completed by February 12th.  The final machine needs to be delivered to the museum and installed by April 11th.