Lola is traveling to South Africa to work in a school. Many of the children don't have shoes - Can you design something to protect their feet that would work for multiple kids?
Overview & Background: For many people in our world, feet/ walking is the main means for transportation. Can you imagine having to walk to school without shoes because you couldn’t afford them? The shoes may be made fully printed, partially printed or of found objects.
○ Objectives: Through this lesson, students will learn which designs are able to stay on feet, provide the most comfort, are able to be sized, etc. THey will analyze their designs for comfort, fit, use, and will have to decide if comfort or function is more important.
○ Audiences: This lesson could be used in 2nd grade and up. I would recommend 3rd grade, as it would be a great lesson to tie to studying about other parts of the world. Allowing students to build parts of the device on the printer and parts using found objects, allows this to be accessible to students of multiple skill levels.
How many kids are refused access to school or to a grocery store? How many kids end up with diseases that kill or seriously threaten their health, all because of a disease or fungus they picked up while navigating the streets in their bare feet? Many children in developing countries grow up barefoot. Whether at play, doing chores or going to school, these children are at risk.
Use these for discussion points with your students:
- A leading cause of disease in developing countries is soil-transmitted diseases, which can penetrate the skin through bare feet. Wearing shoes can help prevent these diseases and the long-term physical and cognitive harm they cause.
- Wearing shoes also prevents feet from getting cuts and sores. Not only are these injuries painful, they also are dangerous when wounds become infected.
- Many times children can’t attend school barefoot because shoes are a required part of their uniform. If they don’t have shoes, they don’t go to school. If they don’t receive an education, they don’t have the opportunity to realize their potential.
— via www.toms.com
Discuss is it a right or a privilege to have shoes? Have students journal - What would your life be like without shoes?
○ Skills Learned (Standards):
K-2-ETS1-1. Ask questions, make observations, and gather information about a situation people want to change to define a simple problem that can be solved through the development of a new or improved object or tool. K-2-ETS1-2. Develop a simple sketch, drawing, or physical model to illustrate how the shape of an object helps it function as needed to solve a given problem.
K-2-ETS1-3. Analyze data from tests of two objects designed to solve the same problem to compare the strengths and weaknesses of how each performs.
Define a simple problem that can be solved through the development of a new or improved object or tool. 3-PS2-4
3-5-ETS1-1. Define a simple design problem reflecting a need or a want that includes specified criteria for success and constraints on materials, time, or cost.
3-5-ETS1-2. Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
3-5-ETS1-3. Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.
Task: Can you design a pair of shoes for someone in South Africa? Keep in mind, you don’t know the size of their feet, so what can you do so that your shoes can be worn by any student who receives them? Is your design one that can grow with the child? (Why would this be important?)
Research: Take a couple days to research shoes. Use the links below to get started. What are people using, why are they using specific materials? How do you pick a size or design?
Design: Sketch out your design. Label materials you will need and where they are in your sketch. If you plan to print some parts, now is time to get going in tinkercad or printshop.
Development: Print it, make it, put it together. Test your shoe. Does it work, fit? Try to work out kinks.
Depending on which manner the students want to use to construct the design, students may need access to: ipads, computer, printer, found objects, glue, etc. Example materials might include foam, styrofoam, cardboard, fabric, wire, hot glue, putty, stickers, string, pipe cleaners- this list is only limited by student ideas.
Handouts & Assets:
Duration: 1-2 weeks: allow one day for information and discussion, a full week (probably a week and a half) for designing and testing and make sure you have a full day to revisit and share designs and debrief.
I would recommend tinkercad for this design, however if your students are more comfortable in another design environment that works too. For students struggling to design on tinkercad, you might show them makerbot print shop and have them draw their design on paper and then scale it.
See attached PDF.