SeaPerchRover Collaborative Project

BY Elizabeth Babich & Mairead Mayen

Quashnet Elementary School (Mashpee)

Project Description

Our objective is to provide an innovative, engaging STEM experience for fifth graders at the Quashnet Elementary School.  In collaboration with students from the Mashpee Middle High School, the fifth grade students will design, build, and test underwater SeaPerch remote operated vehicles.

Throughout this project, students will:
– research principles related to the maneuverability of submarines
– design and build an underwater ROV while applying these principles
– engage in the test / redesign process
– collaborate with mentors from the Mashpee Middle High School robotics classes

In the spring, our fifth grade students will perform research, design, and testing activities during their STEM special.  This will allow students to test multiple theories before the final design and building stage. Through the use of face-to-face meetings and Google Hangouts, the mentors from the Mashpee Middle High School will assist their mentees to promote the creation of successful designs.  Along with their mentors, our students will then test their submersibles at a nearby facility.

This project is in direct alignment with the Massachusetts STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) standards.

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

As a final culminating experience, all  ROVs will be transported to a local pool for the testing phase of our project.  Each group will have the chance to launch their ROV and drive it around a section of the pool.  High school mentors and contributing members of our community will be invited to participate in the culminating event.

Journals will be kept by individual students to track progress throughout this endeavor.  Students will be encouraged to reflect on the experience and to record their approach to the problem solving process.

Long term assessment of engineering skill development at the fifth grade level will be measured on the annual MCAS test.

Benefit to the students and the school

The following state science standards will be targeted throughout this project
5.3-5-ETS3-1(MA). Use informational text to provide examples of improvements to existing technologies (innovations) and the development of new technologies (inventions). Recognize that technology is any modification of the natural or designed world done to fulfill human needs or wants.

5.3-5-ETS3-2(MA). Use sketches or drawings to show how each part of a
product or device relates to other parts in the product or device.

Massachusetts Science and Engineering Practices
1. Asking Questions and defining problems
2. Developing and using models
3. Planning and carrying out investigations
4. Analyzing and interpreting data
5. Using mathematics and computational thinking.
6. Constructing explanations and designing solutions.
7. Engaging from argument from evidence.
8. Obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information.

The project also directly aligns with the following math standards at the fifth grade level.

Massachusetts Math Standards
5.NF.A. Use equivalent fractions as a strategy to add and subtract fractions.
5.NF.B Apply and extend previous understandings of multiplication and division to multiply and divide fractions.
5.MD.A  Convert like measurement units within a given measurement system.
Standards for Mathematical Practice
1.Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
2. Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
4. Model with mathematics.
5. Use appropriate tools strategically.
6. Attends to precision.

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

February:  A “Kick-Off” event will take place at the high school.  Here the students will be paired with their mentors from the engineering class at the high school and introduced to the project.  Outside members of the community including professionals from the Oceanographic and Robotics fields will participate in this event.

March – April :  The initial instruction will be provided including background research.  Students will investigate principles related to submarine technology.

May:  Students will begin the design and development stage of the project in the classroom.

June:  Final culminating event.  All ROVs will be tested at a local facility.  Mentors and community members will be invited to witness the outcome of the project.

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