Step Aside Six Flags!

Step Aside Six Flags!
Step Aside Six Flags!
Jenna Buesser


This semester's Design Day at the Middle School was full of hills, thrills, loops, and chills! To kick off Design Day, on December 20, students enjoyed a special visit from TCNJ freshman engineering student (and Ms. Stacy’s son) Billy Apostolico. Billy presented his engineering design project – a pinball machine – and explained the design process and its relation to our students' work. A huge thanks to Billy for visiting Red Oaks and sharing his insights!

After some initial research and investigation, students (in small design teams) then tackled the day's main challenge: designing the newest roller coaster for Six Flags Great Adventure. The catch? By using what they know about force and motion, their roller coaster had to meet the following criteria:

Have maximum thrills and chills (be creative!)

Safety– no *riders* crashing or flying off the track. (A *marble* must make 3 consecutive trials through the prototype without leaving the track.)

Grades 5/6 must have the largest possible second hill. Grades 7/8 must have the largest possible loop!

Using a limited amount of materials like foam insulation, meter sticks, and masking tape, teams spent the remainder of the day designing, building, and testing their prototypes. Check out the slideshow above to see all of their creations!