Long Beach Middle School’s WoodTech students are repurposing the acrylic desk dividers from last school year to create miniature greenhouses/terrariums while exploring the design cycle. Under the guidance of teacher Brian Pross, they have been tackling various problem-solving challenges while constructing and fine-tuning the projects.
After starting the school year with rigorous safety and tool use lessons the students were ready to take their skills to the next level. They determined through brainstorming sessions that the greenhouse would require fully adjustable exhaust and air intake vents to address potential moisture problems. They also decided on an average size, with the goal of projects small enough to fit on a shelf in the average Long Beach dwelling.
With the design constraints established, students got to work constructing the first prototype, then gathered feedback from peers and staff members. They are currently constructing the second sample, which features more durable materials and structural enhancements. Students are already discussing additions to further optimize their products, such as use of a hygrometer or humidistat as well as felt feet at the base.