BCE offering chance to build ‘straw roller coaster’

The Mid-Plains Community College Business and Community Education Department is offering the STEM program which will involve a physics experiment using a design-thinking process.  In this course, entitled “Engineering a Straw Roller Coaster,” third through sixth graders will learn about slope and gravity. It is a two-day class scheduled for Tuesday and Thursday, Nov. 13 and 15, from 4:30 to 6 p.m. in McMillen Hall at MCC.

During the class, students will create and design a roller coaster out of straws, tape and a ping pong ball. Their completed projects will be tested to determine the top roller coaster design, with a satisfactory ball run. This beginner physics experiment will be scaled up or down for the appropriate age level. STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in four specific disciplines — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — in an interdisciplinary and applied approach. Rather than teach the four disciplines as separate and discrete subjects, STEM integrates them into a cohesive learning paradigm based on real-world applications.

Gayl Korus is the instructor. Course fee is $29. You may register online at www.mpcc.edu/bce or call 308-345-8122.