What Can You Build With 100 Cups?

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So I saw on Pinterest that a 2nd grade teacher brings in 100 cups and allows her students to build structures with them. I let broke my students into 4 groups and gave them each 25 cups. They were allowed to build together whatever they wanted, but I told them at the end of 10 minutes I would come around and measure which group had the highest structure. The kids all had their own idea of what should be done, but they really had to work together to put build their creations. It was a great team building exercise! Then after I crowned the winners with their stickers we brought all the cups together and talked about what worked and what didn’t work. The kids decided we needed the use a lot of the cups on the bottom, and I explained how this gave it a sturdy base. I started by giving one student 4 cups and telling him to start, then I allowed him to pick a friend to do the next 4 cups. They really had to talk to each other about where to put the cups, and I helped them by thinking out-loud (“If we start stacking up now we will not be able to use all the cups”). I really tried to let them do a lot of it, but of course they are only 5-7 and needed some coaching. This was our final masterpiece and the kids were so proud!

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