Resources

Engineering our existence: engineering solutions to living in extreme environments

Introduction

The Engineering our Existence STEM resources are aimed at Key Stage 3 pupils and can be used as part of the curriculum, in STEM clubs or as a drop down activity day.

The resources explore how different indigenous populations have used engineering to allow them to live in extreme environments, and what we can learn from these solutions. They also explore some modern engineering solutions to living in extreme environments.

Each topic has an activity to download, with a notes for teacher’s section in the back (remember to remove any answer pages before copying for students!). There are also three case studies included.

Each resource and case study can be downloaded individually by clicking on the links in the table below.  The teacher's guide, which gives some initial explanation and guidance, can be downloaded by clicking on the download link in the banner above.

Activities

NAME TOPICS EXPLANATION
DESERT Science
Design & technology
Computing
Explains how an indigenous population has created an engineering solution to the problems they encounter in extreme heat, including solar power and traditional desert dress.
MONSOON Geography
Science
Design & technology
Explains how an indigenous population has created an engineering solution to the problems they encounter in extreme rain. It explains the formation of clouds as well as investigating tardigrades, which are able to survive in many extreme environments. 
SUB ZERO Mathematics
Science
Design and technology
Explains how an indigenous population has created an engineering solution to the problems they encounter in extreme cold, including building safe shelters and keeping warm.
CASE STUDY NIALL NOLAN   Engineers without Borders UK - Niall Nolan, Rainwater Harvesting Systems Engineer 
CASE STUDY LUCINDA HAZELL   Engineers without Borders UK - Lucinda Hazell, Civil Engineer
CASE STUDY INGRID HALLIN   A post-doctoral Research Fellow talks about her research project