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Information about Skyscrapers

Published on March 5, 2014

Author: rmisrahi



Skyscraper Unit: STEM for Grade 6

Cloud Club Grade 6 STEM Science Technology Engineering and Math

I will be able to… • Design and build a tall structure using simple material • Use “cloud” storage to share photos • Create a simple presentation from photos • Identify the four characteristics of a skyscraper • Differentiate skyscrapers from other tall structures

Brainstorm • About some tall structures you know • Do you think any of the structures are skyscrapers?

Characteristic – Sets Skyscrapers Apart 1. Skyscrapers are extremely tall. 2. Skyscrapers contain many stories or floors, requiring elevators to go up and down. 3. Skyscrapers are usually supported by strong frames made out of steel or concrete. Buildings that are not skyscrapers typically rely on their walls for support 4. Skyscrapers are places where people live, work and play. Businesses, stores, gyms, pools, condominiums, e tc.

About Skyscrapers • Throughout the ages, people have been inspired to build structures that would almost “touch the sky”. Pyramids, castles, cathedrals, and towers are all evidence of our desire to build big. • In the 1800s, as cities became more and more crowded, architects and engineers had practical reasons for building upwards. They needed to design buildings that would get the most use out of limited amounts of space on the ground.

About Skyscrapers (cont.) • The first skyscrapers were only a few stories tall, but as knowledge about building grew so did skyscrapers! Eventually buildings got so tall that elevators were needed to get people to the upper floors. The first safe elevators were installed in tall buildings in the mid 1800s • Tall buildings were first described as “skyscrapers” in the 1880s, but the word originally cam from tall ship masts that seemed to “scrape the sky”. • Today’s skyscrapers are not only tall but also smarter.

Try it out for yourself • Using the materials provided design and build the tallest structure possible that can support ten gummi bears on one of the floors. • Work in small groups – record with camera.

Presentation requirements • 5 minutes in length – all members of the team must play an active role in creating and presenting • Highlight the design processmaterial, design, team, build, revisions – use your pictures • How tall is your structure in inches? • Using a scale of 1 inch: 20 feet, how tall would your building be? • What parts of your structure support it the most? • Does your structure have more than one story (floor)? • Did you see the effects of gravity, compression and/or tension? Describe what happened. • If this were a real structure, what might it be used for? • Would your structure qualify as a skyscraper? Identify the four characteristics of skyscrapers • If you had the chance to build it again what would you change?

Basic Parts of a Skyscraper • Foundation - The underground part of the skyscraper which supports the building. The foundation is built upon ground known as bedrock.

• Frame – the skeleton of a skyscraper is usally constructed of steel or concrete which has been strengthened by metal. The frame is made of horizontal beams and vertical columns.

• Stories - The floors within a skyscraper • Curtain Wall The outside wall of a skyscraper, whic h may be made of metal, glass, an d stone.

Which shape is more stable, a triangle or a square? Compare the stability of the shapes. 1. Stand each shape up and press down on the top corner. 2. What happens? 3. How much does each one bend and twist? 4. How hard can you press down on each shape before it collapses? Compare the results of your tests on the triangle and square. 1. Which shape was more stable? 2. What do you think made it more stable? 3. How might this shape be used in large structures?

The Big Idea Straws arranged into triangles form more stable shapes than straws arranged into squares. When compression force is applied to the joints, a triangle changes shape less than a square. When compression is applied to a square, as shown below, the joints rotate easily, and the shape changes. In a triangle, the compression in the two sides is balanced by the tension in the cross-piece at the bottom, which pulls the sides back together. This balancing of forces results in a more stable structural form.

Take a "shape" scavenger hunt, through your daily travels, looking for examples of shapes used in structures…..

Hearst Tower - NYC

Explore the loads that big structures must be able to withstand. wgbh/buildingbig/lab/ forces.html wgbh/buildingbig/lab/ loads.html Test out the materials that engineers use to build big. wgbh/buildingbig/lab/ materials.html Rectangles, triangles, and arches – simple shapes can form big ideas! wgbh/buildingbig/lab/ shapes.html derbottom.jpg Squeezing, stretching, sliding, twisting, and bending – try them all

Architect vs Engineer • What are the similarities/differences between what an architect and an engineer does • Create a T chart comparing the two jobs

Design • Building design

Presentation by _______________ WHAT TO DO – Select a building to research _______________________________ CONSIDER THIS – – – W h a t s h a p e s , c o l o r s a n d m a t e r i a l s d o y o u o b s e r v e i n t h is s k y scrapers? How does this building “fit” in with the other skyscrapers in the city and how does this building “stand” out? What features stand out in the design? FACTS TO GATHER            FULL NAME LOCATION PLUS A MAP CONSTRUCTION DATES – BEGINNING AND END TALLEST STRUCTURE IN THE CITY? COUNTRY? WORLD? SKYSCRAPER? YES/NO? WHY? FLOORS MATERIAL USED? GOOD CHOICE? WHY/WHY NOT? USE HISTORY DESIGN – STYLE PEOPLE ASSOCIATED WITH IT: ARCHITECT/ENGINEER? OTHER FAMOUS BUILDINGS?  PICTURES

• • htm • dex.html • •

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