Students from Klinger and Log College’s STEM classes recently met up at Craven Hall and the John Fitch Museum for their third annual steamboat challenge, which came after weeks of learning about and building sailboats, paddle boats and steamboats.
The friendly competition took place in Warminster, where John Fitch developed the steamboat. Teacher Erik Fleischer said, “Our kids took that for inspiration and started to develop their own steamboats.”
They used various materials, including Pringles cans, wood, foam and 3D printed materials to make their boats. Then, they created a steam engine that propelled their boats down a rain gutter by adding heat to a copper coil full of water.
This year’s competition was won by Log College. Following the races, Fleischer and the Craven Hall Historical Society provided pizza and a tour for the students as they learned about Fitch and Craven Hall’s historic connection to the community.
“They’re having fun, they’re enjoying it, they’re learning, they’re making mistakes, they’re figuring out what isn’t working and trying to figure out how to fix it,” said Fleischer.