The Academy was awarded funding from the Welsh Government to disseminate a bilingual version of the Engineering Ideas Box (EIB), plus associated training, to 135 maintained secondary schools in Wales.  The EIB contains practical, hands-on STEM activity resources plus materials to allow students to work on the resources either within a STEM Club, or teachers could use the box within lesson time as curriculum enhancement or enrichment activity.

In addition to receiving a free Engineering Ideas Box worth £200 and free associated training, schools also received STEM Club grants of £100.  The grant was used for purchasing further materials to support the setting up of a new STEM Club or the enhancement of an existing club.

The Academy's delivery partner for this project was The Engineering Education Scheme, Wales.

The bilingual STEM activity resources, which all contain role profiles of practicing engineers, can be downloaded below.

Creating captivating cornflour

Creating captivating cornflour (bilingual Welsh/English) (1.81 MB)

Mixing cornflour and water creates a fluid that becomes more viscous when a large force is suddenly applied to it.  This resource provides guidance for experimenting with this fluid and an explanation as to why it behaves in this way.

Engineer's brain

Engineer's brain (bilingual Welsh/English) (1.53 MB)

Students will explore how biology can be the inspiration for engineering and discover the ideas behind how we can form images of the brain and see how people think.

In control

In control (bilingual Welsh/English) (1.56 MB)

Cycling is becoming an increasingly important transport solution for many people.  This resource sets small groups of students the challenge of working together to design a gadget that can be attached to and powered by a bicycle.

Keeping it cool

Keeping It cool (bilingual Welsh/English) (1.71 MB)

How do you prevent a spacecraft designed to orbit the sun from getting too hot?  This resource provides guidance for an activity that asks students to consider this engineering problem.  The resource challenges students to design, make and test a capsule to stop a chunk of chocolate from melting in a high temperature environment. 

Making music

Making music (bilingual Welsh/English) (2.02 MB)

In this activity, students create musical instruments using recycled materials.  They are then asked to analyse the musical notes their instruments produce using free to download software.  The challenge is for the students to see how close the notes their instruments make can get to those produced by real instruments.

Milking it

Milking it (bilingual Welsh/English) (2.06 MB)

We all depend on plastic to make many of the products we use.  However, the majority of plastics are created using crude oil, which is a non-renewable fossil fuel that emits pollutants when processed and burnt.  Although we are recycling an increasing amount of plastic, alternative raw materials for making plastics are being sought.  The activity in this resource provides a hands-on guide to making plastic from milk.

Moving house

Moving house (bilingual Welsh/English) (1.57 MB)

Reinforcing the materials used to construct buildings is one way of reducing the chances of damage and collapse during an earthquake.  This resource provides fun, hands-on ideas to help students learn about making buildings earthquake-proof.

Perfect pylons

Perfect pylons (bilingual Welsh/English) (1.81 MB)

Electricity pylons are an essential part of the electricity supply network which provides us with power whenever we need it.  Pylons must be stable and able to resist the static and dynamic loads exerted on them.  In this resource, students are challenged to make and test model pylons that can support cables and resist wind without toppling over.

Rescue rail

Rescue rail (bilingual Welsh/English) (1.48 MB)

Students will explore the design and technology needed in our railways and apply these ideas to build their own models.

The right switch

The right switch (bilingual Welsh/English) (1.58 MB)

Quantum Tunnelling Compound (QTC) is a material that behaves like an insulator, but can be made to behave like an electrical conductor when compressed or stretched.  This resource provides an idea for a class-based or a STEM club activity using QTC.

Take off

Take off (bilingual Welsh/English) (2.05 MB)

A two-part activity that starts with a group discussion about the factors that need to be considered when an aircraft takes off and lands.  The second activity challenges students to design and make a model aeroplane and a mechanism or system for launching it.

Whole package

Whole package (bilingual Welsh/English) (1.63 MB)

Thermochromic pigments become transparent at a specific temperature and can be mixed with paint to create an amazing effect.  They are used to make products that indicate information or warnings about temperature.  This resource provides guidance for an activity that gives students the opportunity to experiment with thermochromic pigments.

Smart muscle

Smart muscle (bilingual Welsh/English) (4.45 MB)

Shape memory alloys (SMA) can expand or contract by a significant amount when heated and cooled.  They are used in medicine, dentistry, robotics and to make things move.  Learn more about the applications of this smart material and how to create an activity for students that gives them hands-on experience of a shape memory alloy.