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Rube Goldberg Machine

What’s a Rube Goldberg Machine? Well, until today, I didn’t know either. Think of the crazy inventions in Wallace and Gromit or the device that opens the gate door for Chunk in The Goonies, after he does the truffle shuffle! Rube Goldberg was an American cartoonist who drew cartoons that depicted the completion of simple tasks in ridiculously complicated ways. In the UK we would also call it a ‘Heath Robinson contraption.’

Why am I talking about this? Because of this music video by Ok Go… which has a crazy Rube Goldberg Machine. It was used as part of an inspirational in-service workshop by Alison Drever of Education Scotland. The bizarre intricacy and success of the machine was an analogy for successful curriculum design and development. Curriculum development/progression in schools is (or perhaps should be) messy, fun, creative, lots of small connections, different pathways, risk taking, seat of the pants and more.

This is all good and well, but I have now spent the rest of my evening watching YouTube videos on Goldberg Machines. Lots of examples here on Rube Tube!… And a favourite of mine for the Goldieblox toy company.…

There is also a whole other world of educational resources and Maker Faire possibilities on this site too.… Including a cool app that I’ve downloaded. I LOVE all this kind of stuff. The Maker Faire community have got some brilliant ideas. And now I really want to try and make a Goldberg Machine in school. Anyone else fancy it?

Image: CBS news

By Athole McLauchlan

Dad / primary teacher / literacy / technologies / outdoor learning / M.Ed student / #MIEExpert / #AppleTeacher / #ScotEdChat / #hatecelery /#rubbishatcartwheels

2 replies on “Rube Goldberg Machine”

Thanks Auntie Lou! That’s my first comment. Exciting! You win a large glass of wine. Hope you are well and the new business is going well. x

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