Getting Started with Engineering

Getting Started with Engineering : Think Like an Engineer!

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Fun engineering projects for kids
Does your kid's love of 'tinkering' resemble that of a budding Thomas Edison? Then Getting Started with Engineering is guaranteed to spark their fascination! The focused, easy-to-complete projects offered inside are designed to broaden their understanding of basic engineering principles, challenge their problem-solving skills, and sharpen their creativity all while having fun along the way.


Engineers are experts on how things work and this book is your youngster's best first step to developing the skills they need to think, design, and build things like the pros. The projects they'll complete feature a fun twist that appeal to their age group from a tiny model roller coaster to a wearable toy that includes an electronic circuit and the instructions are written in an easy-to-follow manner, making it possible for them to experience the pride and accomplishment of working independently.




Appropriate for children aged 7-11
Simple explanations guide children to complete three projects using household items
The full-color design, short page count, and easy-to-follow instructions are designed to appeal to kids
Brought to you by the trusted For Dummies brand


If you have a little engineer that could, Getting Started with Engineering is a great way to encourage their fascination of figuring out how things work.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 128 pages
  • 141 x 215 x 7mm | 212g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 1119291224
  • 9781119291220
  • 217,021

Back cover copy

An engineering book for kids!

Engineers are experts on how things work. This book is your first step to developing the skills you need to design and build like an engineer. Tinker with fun projects that apply the Engineering Cycle to solve real-world problems.

Load the bridge--design a virtual bridge then build and test a fun pasta modelAlien invasion--design and craft a wearable toy using an electronic circuit and 3D printingRide the coaster--construct a tiny roller coaster with drops, twists, and loops

Technology Requirements:
Hardware - PC or tablet with Internet connection running Windows 7 or higher or Mac with Internet connection running Mac OS X 10.7 or higher
Other materials - Common household materials including scissors, a trash bag, a marble, cotton balls, marshmallows, canola oil, foam tubing, and a kitchen scale (full materials list in the Introduction).
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Table of contents

Introduction 1


About This Book 1


About You 3


About the Icons 4


The First Step 4


Project 1: Engineering 101 5


What Is Engineering? 5


Where Do Engineers Work? 5


What Are Some Engineering Fields? 6


What Is the Engineering Design Cycle? 7


What Does a Design Look Like? 8


What Is the Golden Rule of Engineering? 10


What Is the Iron Triangle of Engineering? 10


Mini Project: Classic Pocket Rocket 12


Project 2: Touchdown Mars 13


Introduction to Planetary Landers 13


Materials 15


Simulate a Landing with Technology 16


Play with a descent to Mars 16


Control a descent to Mars 18


Design Your Mars Lander 19


Build Your Mars Lander 21


Test Your Mars Lander 24


Improve Your Mars Lander 25


Aerospace Engineering and the Iron Triangle 25


Project 3: The Clock Is Ticking 27


All Here, In Order, On Time Let's Go! 27


Materials 29


Simulate a Simple Logistics Process 30


Simulate a More Complex Logistics Process 32


Plan Your Industrial Engineering Process 34


Plan with a Gantt chart 34


Plan by acting it out 36


Implement Your Logistical Plan 37


Evaluate Your Success 39


Improve Your Process 39


Iron Triangle of Engineering 40


Gantt Charting with a Spreadsheet 40


Project 4: Squeaky Clean Up 42


Introduction to Oil Spill Clean Ups 42


Materials 44


Plan Your Oil Spill Clean-Up Process 45


Plan to contain the oil 46


Plan to skim the oil 46


Plan to use sorbents 46


Plan to disperse the oil 47


Sketch your process 48


Implement Your Clean-Up Process 49


Simulate the oil spill 49


Execute your clean-up plan 50


Evaluate Your Success 51


Improve Your Process 52


Iron Triangle of Engineering 53


Mini Project: Cleaning Feathers and Fur 54


Project 5: Load the Bridge 55


Civil Engineers Build the World 56


Introduction to Bridges 56


Materials 58


Model Your Bridge with Technology 58


Design Your Truss Bridge 63


Build Your Pasta Bridge 66


Test Your Pasta Bridge 68


Improve Your Bridge 70


Civil Engineering and the Iron Triangle 70


Project 6: Electric Alien Cap 73


Electronics 101 73


Electrical circuits 74


Symbols and schematics 74


Series and parallel circuits 75


Materials 77


Design Your Electric Alien Cap 79


Build Your Cap 80


Get your components ready 80


Mark your circuit onto the hat 81


Stitch the positive connections in your circuit 81


Stitch the ground connections in your circuit 83


Test Your Circuit 85


Improve Your Cap 85


Electrical Engineering and the Iron Triangle 85


Project 7: Now You're Cooking! 88


Early Mechanical Engineering 88


Archimedes the engineer 89


Energy everywhere 90


The First Law of Thermodynamics 90


Materials 91


Design Your Solar Oven 92


The Second Law of Thermodynamics 92


Oven design criteria 92


Build Your Design 94


Build the food chamber 94


Add the oven insulation 95


Attach the solar reflector 97


Test Your Design Plan 98


Improve Your Cooker 99


Solar Cooking and the Iron Triangle 100


Mini Project: Vdara Death Ray 102


Project 8: Roller Coaster Mania 103


Introduction to Roller Coasters 104


Mass in a roller coaster system 105


Energy in a roller coaster system 105


Materials 106


Model Your Coaster with Technology 106


Design Your Roller Coaster 112


Build Your Roller Coaster 113


Test Your Roller Coaster 116


Improve Your Roller Coaster 117


Entertainment Engineering and the Iron Triangle 117


Appendix: Cool Tools (and More!) 120
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About Camille McCue

Camille McCue, Ph.D, is a veteran STEM educator who has teletaught for NASA and PBS and instructed math, tech, and engineering in the classroom. She currently teaches in Las Vegas, NV.
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