Uploaded by Erik Everett

paper tower challenge

Civil Engineering
Challenge info:
For the paper tower challenge, you will work with a partner to build the highest tower possible using
only one sheet of paper and 12 inches of tape. Your tower must be a minimum of two feet tall, but this will not
be high enough to beat your classmates. For example, the highest tower built was just over six feet tall.
Background info:
This challenge will give you an introduction to civil engineering. You will learn how the shape of an
object is used in engineering to provide strength and offer efficiency. Take for example a piece of paper, it is
very flimsy and is not much use other than for writing in its normal shape. When you take this piece of paper
and place folds in it, it becomes strong enough to be used as a fan. You may have seen people do this on a hot
summer day to keep themselves cool. Another good example is a paper airplane.
1. One sheet of plain white printer paper (9 ½ x 11)
2. 12 inches of 1” masking tape or scotch tape
Tools available:
1. Scissors
2. 12 inch ruler
3. Tape Measure
1. The tape can not be used to tape your tower to the table
2. If you mess up, you can start over but you must return all of your materials to get new ones
3. The tower must be free standing (it can not rest against anything)
Before starting the challenge:
1. Think of some shapes that will provide strength for the tower, list them below.
a. _____________________
b. _____________________
After the challenge:
1. How tall were you able to construct your tower ______ feet ______ inches