Design Challenge: Duct Tape Trivia

In this design challenge: duct tape trivia we explore the magical usefulness of duct tape. Do we know where duct tape came from? Why does duct tape work?

The Problem:

We need to repair an important part on a piece of equipment. How do learn quickly what the limits and strengths are for duck tape? How can we better understand this amazing material?


  • A data lab set up for each team
  • Duck tape
  • Three types of material (steel, PVC, and fabric)
  • A timer

Break it Down

  • We start this design challenge by listing five things we can observe about duct tape. We will not tell you what to observe or why, just make five observations and record them. Then we will start the research component of this challenge.
  • Start by logging into a Raspberry Pi computer with a functioning monitor and internet access. Create a strategy for spending FIVE minutes looking for answers to those five observations. The five minutes start when each team has a login and Google Chrome prompt on screen.
  • Use your time wisely! Once the five minutes is up, each team will have 10 minutes to build something using duct tape that clearly demonstrates what their research revealed. Use this time wisely as well!

Use The Design Cycle

Always remember to follow the design cycle when you are working on a design challenge. If you do not know what the design cycle is, you can find it below. But it will start with brainstorming an idea and research! Then you will design and build your proof of use idea.

After the 10 minutes is up, each team must spend five minutes each testing and modifying their design. Then they will have five minutes to make changes and apply ideas they saw from other teams. Then they present!

The Design Cycle

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