What's Going On
Other paper-building activities
and testing can extend this work. Can you build a paper column that will
support a book? Can you build a strong paper wall? Design a test to find
the strongest paper beam. All of these questions look at the interplay
between properties of the material (paper) and form.
In construction with steel beams, I beams are used just for this reason--to
put most of the steel where the greatest stress is experienced. In the
paper construction, rolled tubes of paper prove to be very strong. Again,
most of the paper here is put on the edges where the stresses are greater.
Building paper bridges with
other kinds of paper can also extend this work. What can you do with a
single sheet of newspaper? How about a sheet of tissue paper? What can
you build with a sheet of tagboard?