In this activity, students work in teams and use biomimicry to build an Adaptation Station that will enhance life for humans living in a specific environment.

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This 60 minute activity was prepared for Siemens STEM Day. The activity focuses on having students develop a CAD model for a biomimetic “Adaptation Station” in one of four regions of the globe (desert, arctic, tropical jungle, ocean island). Students must design a Station that has 3 products inspired by animals or plants that inhabit their assigned terrain and that can help humans survive in that harsh climate. In lieu of a CAD model, students could also produce drawings or physical prototypes.

To extend and deepen this activity consider the following modifications:

  • Provide students with additional information and examples to introduce biomimicry. (Tip: Browse AskNature Resources for inspiring videos)
  • Provide students with additional time to research their assigned ecosystems in detail and develop a list of design criteria and constraints.
  • Have students identify organisms from their assigned ecosystem that have exceptional adaptations to the unique conditions of that location.
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Objectives

  • Students analyze how effective strategies enable plants and animals to survive in harsh climates.

  • Students apply knowledge about plants and animals to a product in order to create an original design.

  • Students evaluate computer aided designs presented by their peers.

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