Rube Goldberg competition gives students hands-on experience - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Rube Goldberg competition gives students hands-on experience

Students at Ocean Springs High School held a competition Thursday to see who could over-think the best. (Photo source: WLOX) Students at Ocean Springs High School held a competition Thursday to see who could over-think the best. (Photo source: WLOX)
The school's annual Rube Goldberg competition proved that even the simplest tasks can be super complicated. (Photo source: WLOX) The school's annual Rube Goldberg competition proved that even the simplest tasks can be super complicated. (Photo source: WLOX)
OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) -

Students at Ocean Springs High School held a competition Thursday to see who could over-think the best.

The school's annual Rube Goldberg competition proved that even the simplest tasks can be super complicated. Physics teacher Scott Hawkins has been hosting the class project for 16 years, and says it's something the students always look forward to.

"They come up with some really amazing things," said Hawkins.

The students are tasked with creating complex contraptions for simple actions - such as taking a picture, or putting something in a box - that must happen in more than 10 steps. The project is inspired by Rube Goldberg's drawings of complex machines satirizing the industrial era.

The students set up their machines throughout the gym and student judges marked up score sheets for each team. One team got a round of applause after it's machine impressed a small crowd of fellow students, and Mr. Hawkins himself. 

"First, weighted cans are going to go uphill, turning a pulley, which is going to activate a hammer, which is going to hit a bowling ball, pulling a nail out of a fan, which is going to push a boat across water, knocking over another can which is going to set off a rat trap, which is going to fling a golf ball into a cone, which is going to set off a newton's cradle, starting the dominoes and hitting a that was easy button. But, even until the last second, it was frustrating," explained Adam St. Amant.

St. Amant and his team spent about three weeks putting the pieces together for their complex Rube Goldberg machine, which went off without a hitch for their teacher.

"It's gone off with hitches every time before the teacher came, so, we're just happy it worked," said St. Amant.

All of the students seemed to have a good time, whether or not their machine performed as expected.

"It was just fun overall. It was fun constructing the stuff," said Josh Cochran.

Other students agreed.

"I got to hang out with all my friends in my group. We got to hang out after school, build it, and it was just a fun project to do," said Sarah Ryan.

And if nothing else, it may have helped the students appreciate the simpler things in life. Students competed in several categories including best design, and best overall project.

Copyright 2016 WLOX. All rights reserved.

  • NEWSMore>>

  • Brews are flowing at inaugural Craft Beer Festival at MGM Park

    Brews are flowing at inaugural Craft Beer Festival at MGM Park

    Saturday, October 21 2017 6:42 PM EDT2017-10-21 22:42:25 GMT
    There are a lot of beer festivals around, and organizers are hoping to make this one stand out among the best. (Photo source: WLOX)There are a lot of beer festivals around, and organizers are hoping to make this one stand out among the best. (Photo source: WLOX)

    A beer celebration is brewing at MGM Park in Biloxi. It's the inaugural Craft Beer Festival.

    More >>

    A beer celebration is brewing at MGM Park in Biloxi. It's the inaugural Craft Beer Festival.

    More >>
  • Suspect wanted for shooting 10-year-old in Laurel

    Suspect wanted for shooting 10-year-old in Laurel

    Saturday, October 21 2017 6:15 PM EDT2017-10-21 22:15:22 GMT
    Travis Lindsey (mugshot)Travis Lindsey (mugshot)

    A 10-year-old boy was shot in Laurel today. According to Laurel police chief Tyrone Stewart, the child is currently at the South Central Regional Medical Center. Authorities are still searching for a suspect.  This is an ongoing investigation, if you have any information, contact Laurel Police or or Metro Crime Stoppers at 601-582-STOP. Copyright WDAM 2017. All Rights Reserved.

    More >>

    A 10-year-old boy was shot in Laurel today. According to Laurel police chief Tyrone Stewart, the child is currently at the South Central Regional Medical Center. Authorities are still searching for a suspect.  This is an ongoing investigation, if you have any information, contact Laurel Police or or Metro Crime Stoppers at 601-582-STOP. Copyright WDAM 2017. All Rights Reserved.

    More >>
  • Annual Fall Muster brings history to life at Beauvoir

    Annual Fall Muster brings history to life at Beauvoir

    Saturday, October 21 2017 4:22 PM EDT2017-10-21 20:22:22 GMT
    The Beauvoir property was transformed into a Civil War battlefield, complete with weapons, tents, and reenactors in period attire. (Photo source: WLOX)The Beauvoir property was transformed into a Civil War battlefield, complete with weapons, tents, and reenactors in period attire. (Photo source: WLOX)

    The thunder of cannons and rattle of musket fire shook the grounds at Beauvoir on Saturday for the annual Fall Muster reenactment.

    More >>

    The thunder of cannons and rattle of musket fire shook the grounds at Beauvoir on Saturday for the annual Fall Muster reenactment.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly