Project Tinguely: designing a kinetic sculpture for the new courtyard

Title of the activity Project Tinguely: designing a kinetic sculpture for the new courtyard
Teachers/Schools/Country Netherlands: Theresialyceum

M.Nijsten & E.van Alphen

Age of the students 15-16
Class Technology&Design
Topic of the activity Kinetic sculpture
Description of the activity The end result of this lesson series is a scaled prototype of a kinetic sculpture for the new courtyard of the school. All students have two years of experience in technology lessons in which they had to build something from a plan. For this lesson series there is no predefined plan for the students to build. The students need to design their own final product.

This is the second time we are running this project. Based on our past experiences and the workshops during the FablabShools EU project we have made some adaptions to the project.

The fieldstudy has been more focused with three exercises and the reflection document (powerpoint) that the students have the fill out at the end of the project has been enriched with questions after each phase for the students to answer in order to direct the reflection.

This lesson series started with a Prezi about the artist Jean Tinguley and Kinect art. From this Prezi the students had to make a mindmap describing what they think kinetic art and the work of Tinguley is about. After this introduction the students had to do some research in different areas. 1) The new courtyard: what does it look like, how big is it, where does the light come from etc. 2) Kinetics: how does stuff move/use energy. 3) Sculptures in public space: internet and own pictures of sculptures they find interesting. 

Based on the designbrief outcome and the fieldstudy outcomes the students had to sketch their ideas. Come up with as many as possible. In the second round of ideation the students had to use Lego and carboard to come up with new ideas. Lego was chosen because it would make it easier for the students to quickly experience mechanics.

Parts of the final prototype need to be made using either the 3d printer or the laser cutter. The rest of the parts could be manually crafted.