Friday, August 01, 2008

Building, day 14

Thursday was "do-everything-else/try-to-regain-balance-in-the-project day". Well, at least I got a few things done, anyway.

Friday, today, was our last day in the shop. There was nothing bittersweet about that :-)

Ed and I sped through the day trying to finish the last few things that required a wood shop. Again, we were there until the last moment however we weren't quite able to finish everything; we were very close though.

We still had a couple of decisions to make, however. We had decided the best way to attach the electrical boxes sandwiched between the sub tabletop and a foot square supporter of the very bottom. I had been thinking about it for a week and had a design in my mind, Ed had a design in his mind, also. Like so many aspects of this project, our team design decision process reflected what we want in our own science classroom communities.I was convinced my method was better, and Ed, that his method was better. The image on the left illustrates my method that on the right, his method.





















Both of our methods had merit, of course, and we both wanted the best design. to analyze the design we dissected, then examined, the variables that made the design "better". This, of course, brought me to think about thinking tools, in particular, the comparison matrix. Below is a screenshot of one I've used my class while teaching about microscopes.Variables In this case included student safety, ease of construction, speed of construction, ease of wiring, strength, beauty, fewer resources, and I don't remember what else. As Ed said, even though we each thought our own methods were better, we had to truthfully open ourselves to understanding the other persons method because, perhaps it might indeed be better. Looking at the photo below you can see which method we decided was the best--It indeed was the easiest.
Instead of drilling holes through the 2 x 6 is in the leg assemblies we opted for the easier solution of simply notching them.

To give the glass frame a more finished look and eliminate the danger of splinters from the edge of the sub tabletop they were sanded using a belt sander.
Here you can see some of the 24 tables lined up ready to go toward our science rooms, upstairs. Yes, that was good exercise...

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