Scrapheap Challenge

Key Stage 3, 11-14yrs

Every year Geevor hosts an interschool Scrapheap Challenge, as part of National Science and Engineering Week.

Local secondary schools are invited to bring teams of year 7 students to build waterwheels out of recycled materials, in order to pull a tram up an inclined slope. The overall fastest waterwheel between all schools wins the prestigious Geevor Scrapheap Challenge Cup!

Students are given just one hour to create a model of their invention out of junk - including old plastic milk bottles, cardboard tubing, spindles, margarine tubs and a glue gun. Waterwheels can be designed beforehand, and teacher’s packs are provided for this, but they won’t know what materials are available to them until the day on-site, thereby testing their engineering skill and ingenuity.

Once constructed, each waterwheel is then put to the test. Each team is given a barrel of water, a string to attach the tram to their waterwheel’s winder and maximum of two minutes to see how fast their model could pull the tram up the entire length of the track.

The winning team overall wins the Geevor Scrapheap Challenge Cup, designed and made by one of Geevor’s own ex-miners, Nick Hudson.

The day onsite at Geevor also includes a tour of the mine’s buildings and machines, specifically looking at Geevor’s own working waterwheel, and the different power sources used in mining over time.

Design and Technology and Science are key themes of Geevor and this event demonstrates just one of the many ways the site can be used as an inspiring example of these important subjects.

Please contact Geevor's Learning Team for more ideas of how to use the site for any curriculum subject.

 


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