Science & Nature

Design a Rube Goldberg Machine

Students will learn how to make components of a Rube Goldberg machine such as ramps, levers, chain reactions, and loops. This is the concept-introduction version of the multi-day Let's Build a Rube Goldberg Machine Together course.
Brooke Langford, MAT
137 total reviews for this teacher
3 reviews for this class
Completed by 10 learners
  There are no upcoming classes.

50 minutes

per class

Meets once


year olds


learners per class

per learner

How does aOne-Timeclass work?

Meets once at a scheduled time
Live video chat, recorded and monitored for safety and quality
Great for exploring new interests and different styles of teachers

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Class Experience

In this engineering design project, students will improve their engineering design process skills by using science concepts* to design a device that ends in the popping of a balloon.

*science concepts: Potential / Kinetic Energy and Newton’s 3 Laws of Motion
Students will create Rube Goldberg machines at home. This can be done individually but often requires help depending on how elaborate the idea becomes.
Projects can take 1-4 hours to build depending on student design and set up time (for example, setting up dominoes may take 15 minutes for each attempt).
Students will be given a template (EDP: Design a Rube Goldberg Machine) to guide them through the design process.
Materials can be changed based on availability and student ideas. The following are good guidelines when thinking of what materials to use for building a Rube Goldberg Machine
- A ramp (blocks, tracks, cardboard, railing)
- Something that rolls (ball, wheels, toy cars)
- Something that moves (dominos, blocks, mouse trap)
- Something that adheres/attaches (legos, string, tape)
- Something to pop - balloon ideal (ziplock bag, packing bag, tied glove with air)
In addition to the Outschool classroom, this class uses:
  • EDP: Rube Goldberg Machine document
Learners are assessed verbally through the discussion portion. They will be given immediate feedback on ideas and guided through the thinking process as needed.
50 minutes per week in class, and an estimated 1 - 2 hours per week outside of class.


Brooke Langford, MATScience Explorer
137 total reviews
138 completed classes

About Me

I teach all domains of science classes including Life Science, Physical Science, and Earth and Space Science. I enjoy incorporating engineering and STEM projects as I can in addition to valuable life skills such as discussion strategies,... 
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