Straw Tower Challenge

Straw Tower Challenge

Topic: Engineering Careers

Empowerment Lesson Video: Engineering Careers


  • Drinking straws (10 per student)
  • Washi tape
  • Yardstick (Optional)

Video Discussion:

Tell the students they will be watching the video Engineering Careers. Explain that the video presents role models talking about why engineering is a career choice that girls should consider.

After viewing the video, invite students to share specific things they learned about the different engineering careers presented in the video and to reflect upon their observations (e.g., ‘I liked when the Executive Engineer from General Motors said that the crash dummy test site let her know that engineers do important work keeping people safe.’).

Activity Instructions:

  1. Each student will receive 10 drinking straws and have washi tape available. The goal is to build the tallest tower, using the tape to secure the straws.
  2. Each student will create their own design to construct their tower.
  3. If you like you can measure the towers afterward and allow the students to adjust their design to try and make their tower taller.

*Adapted from