Subscribe to our free fortnightly newsletter and stay ahead with the latest news in independent education
The winning team and their bridge with, left to right: Lewis Andrews, Beard Assistant Site Manager; Margi Lamey from SATRO and Guy Hannell, Beard Guildford Director. Credit: Alex Orrow

Surrey pupils build bridges with SATRO

Pupils in Surrey took part in a construction challenge to develop STEM skills

Posted by Lucinda Reid | December 04, 2016 | Events

In Surrey, 48 pupils, aged 12 and 13, from Royal Alexandra & Albert School in Reigate, Carshalton Boys Sports College in Carshalton and The John Fisher School in Purley were given the chance to design and build a self-supporting bridge at SATRO’s ‘Year 8 Engineering Construction Challenge’.  

The learning initiative, which took place at Royal Alexandra & Albert School, was organised by education charity SATRO and sponsored by construction company Beard. The initiative aims to help youngsters develop science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) skills through hands-on project experience, working with industry professionals. Through the scheme, SATRO hopes to provide a fun yet realistic experience of working in STEM-related jobs and encourage more young people into STEM careers.

Working in six teams of eight, the youngsters were tasked with constructing a 1.5 metre span bridge with rolled-up paper, masking tape, string and nuts and bolts. Using inspiration from real-life bridges, the teams had to agree the design of their structure and how they would build it using  ‘arch’, ‘truss’ or ‘suspension’ techniques. The challenge included pricing up the project and making sure their bridge was cost-effective to build. Each bridge was then tested with weights and teams had to give a presentation justifying their costs to a panel of judges.

The pupils also benefitted from a presentation delivered by Beard Assistant Site Manager, Lewis Andrews, about working in the construction industry.

“These hands-on events are a great way to get young people thinking about the world around them and how it is made,” said Guy Hannell, Beard Guildford Director. “At a time when our sector faces a serious skills shortage, we hope that initiatives like the SATRO Year 8 Engineering Construction Challenge will aid and inspire young people to follow a career in STEM-related subjects. It has been a pleasure to work with SATRO again on this very worthwhile and career-shaping event, which is our third this year.”

Beard will be supporting two more Year 8 Engineering Construction Challenges with SATRO this month at Hinchley Wood School in Esher, and Collingwood College in Camberley.

Ingrid Rolland, a science teacher at Royal Alexandra & Albert School, said: “We were happy to host this construction challenge for our own pupils and pupils from other local schools. The task mirrored real-life projects that pupils might face when they are older.  It was a worthwhile exercise, and tested pupils’ skills in engineering and project management.”

For more information, visit SATRO’s website.

Subscribe to our free fortnightly newsletter and stay ahead with the latest news in independent education

Related stories

SATRO holds construction challenge at Royal Grammar School

Instructor uses Möbius to enhance learning

The Next Phase of Technology in Math Education

Maths Just Clicks

Clickable Math: Easy to Do, Easy to Learn, Easy to Teach

WIRED: inspiring the Next Generation

How AV is changing the face of edtech

Southampton Solent Uni: major studio upgrades from VDC

Blended learning: changing the face of education

AV: Isn't it time to deliver what the user wants?

Market place - view all

Taplanes

Located in the village of Nidd, Taplanes began life as a subsidiar...

Stevensons

Quality school uniform and sportswear
Stevensons is one of ...

Netgear

Welcome to the New School of Wireless.
Digital textbooks. Onl...

Webanywhere

Education Solutions for your School
Webanywhere provide the pri...

Led hut

LED lights for home & business. SAVE money with energy efficie...

Huck nets

For over 50 years, the HUCK-Label has signified: - high-quality ne...