MechAnimations are home-made kinetic toys, which depict animals or people with movable body parts. Students begin by making things from pegboard strips and boards. They learn to distinguish between structures and mechanisms, and learn how to make increasingly more complex linkages. These become the basis for understanding and making MechAnimations. Students learn to control the direction that an output moves, how far it moves, and the forces involved. They use this knowledge and their imaginations to create their final MechAnimations and the stories which the MechAnimations will illustrate. This unit integrates engineering, science, mathematics, ELA, and art.
Note: These web-based materials incorporate revisions of the Pilot Test curriculum.
Downloads of the alignment of the Mechanimations curriculum to national standards and to state math and science standards are available below.
The pilot test MechAnimations curriculum is much more extensive than this web based version. It includes background and technical information, extensive troubleshooting suggestions, assessment activities and more detailed instructional procedures. Download the MechAnimations curriculum, pilot test version, below.