Completed Project – Lego Table for the Barrier Islands Center – Post by Stinson Moss EDI’22

From left to right, Nicholas Rose, Kai Wang, and Stinson Moss with their completed lego table. The design included lego compatible tiles, storage space, and consideration of weight. Here the EDI Fellows and the table are pictured in the attic of the Barrier Islands Center, where the Lego Table will be kept.

The Lego Table was a success! The hard work put into the table has reflected on the final product; It’s bigger, holds storage for legos, and most importantly, inviting to children. Although the Lego Team faced many obstacles, they stayed compelled to their task and persevered through the trials and tribulations placed before them. Kai, Nicholas and Stinson have successfully built an innovated lego table for the Barrier Islands Center. We all can’t wait to see little children gathered around playing with their Legos. It will be fantastic!

Kai Wang (foreground) is pictured here working on the Lego Table.

Completed Project – Bench for Barrier Islands Center – Post by James Wilson EDI’22

From left to right, Foster Kimple, David Smythe, and James Wilson on the completed build of their bench design.

We have now finished the 2×4 bench and it has been a resounding success. We have just finished the final coat of stain and it is ready to give it to the Barrier Island Center. The bench is very sturdy and comfortably fits four people. Since the last bench blog post, we cut the 2x4s into our predesigned lengths and angles. We have completely screwed the bench together and stained the whole bench in a light grey color to match with the area. We call our bench ‘the Man Bench’ and are excited to give it to the Barrier Island Center in honor of Art Schwarzschild.

From left to right, David Smythe, Foster Kimple, and James Wilson on their completed bench placed next to the Fossil Pit at the Barrier Islands Center, VA.

A Sarcastic Review of the Food Prepared by the 2022 EDI Fellows during their Summer Experience – Post by Kai wang EDI’22

From top to bottom and then left to right, Foster Kimple, Kai Wang, David Smythe, Stinson Moss, James Wilson, and Nicholas Rose. Human pyramid constructed at Barrier Islands Center on the final day and after they presented their completed build projects.

Food was an integral part to our Kiptopeke experience. The meals consisted of pancakes, BLTs, spaghetti and meatballs, scrambled eggs and sausage, ham and cheese sandwiches, hamburgers, and tacos. The pairs of chefs that cooked the meals were Stinson and James, Foster and me, and David and Nicholas. While each chef did a phenomenal job curating meals to fulfill our energy, Stinson and James were, by far, the superior food connoisseurs!

Burger Night after a hard day of building in company with Mr. Wetmore (not shown)! Avocados, Eggs, and Bacon were made for this gourmet meal. From left to right, Foster Kimple, Stinson Moss, Dr. Vallery, Dr. Call, Kai Wang, James Wilson, David Smythe, and Nicholas Rose.

On the first day that they were cooking, they added the extra touch of burnt flavor to our meal. They also made the executive decision to create an innovative, makeshift alarm to wake us all up. James set butter on the pan for too long, thus causing the milk solids to burn away. This act of burning the butter resulted in a thick smoke. James and Stinson then proceeded to physically and metaphorically “twiddle their thumbs” as the smoke from the pan rose and set off the smoke alarm. The lightly blackened chocolate pancakes lightened up our cohort’s mood for the rest of the day.

S’more night! From left to right, Kai Wang, James Wilson, Nicholas Rose, Foster Kimple.

For dinner, James and Stinson cooked spaghetti and meatballs. Although the consumption experience brought me to the fourth dimension, the cooking was comparatively mediocre compared to the earlier morning’s food. However, for dessert, James was put in charge of baking the cookies. One might ask, “How is it possible to make an item, like Tollhouse cookies, better than it already is?” Well, James bakes the cookies so well that I went into a coma for 4 hours because my brain could not handle the dopamine produced by simply ingesting the cookie. James had also used a dab of burnt flavor. The secret to his baking was watching the oven intently. Dr. Vallery noticed that the cookies were “burning” and asked James if the cookies were done. James confidently said that the cookies were almost done, and then proceeded to spectate the card game. Afterwards, the cookies also turned out lightly “blackened”, just as James intended it to be. The food was a success!

Celebrating Foster’s 15th Birthday! From left to right, James Wilson, Kai Wang, Foster Kimple, David Smythe, and Nicholas Rose.

2022 Summer Experience: A Lego Table for the Barrier Islands Center – Post by Nicholas Rose EDI’22

Pictured from left to right is the 2022 EDI cohort, Kai Wang, James Wilson, Foster Kimple, Nicholas Rose, David Symthe, and Stinson Moss. Kai, Nicholas, and Stinson are working on a lego table for the Barrier Islands Center during their EDI summer experience.

For our first EDI summer experience, Stinson Moss, Kai Wang, and I are designing and building an improved LEGO table for the Barrier Islands Center, which serves as main attraction for younger kids in the museum. The current LEGO table, which only allows a couple of kids to play at once, has no base plate for the legos and does not include any storage.

Stinson Moss, Nicholas Rose, and Kai Wang (left to right in foreground) are developing their design of the lego table for the Barrier Islands Center.

Our LEGO table design is contains eight 10×10 inch base plates, surrounded by a ½ inch lip to prevent legos from falling off the table. Our design also includes a cubby storage system on the underside of the table and a possible 4 inch divots along the sides for temporary storage. After creating a prototype out of popsicle sticks, we visited the center to see the current table and the new space for it. Following our discussion with Monika Bridgforth of the Barrier Islands Center, we adjusted the design and then purchased supplies from a local hardware store out on the Eastern Shore (VA).   

Stay tuned for another post on building phase and final product and look for the blog post on the accompanying summer experience project, a lego table, by the other 2022s.

-Nicholas Rose EDI’22

2022 Summer Experience – Designing a Bench in Honor of Art Schwarzschild, A Friend of the Barrier Islands Center – Post by Foster Kimple EDI’22

From left to right, Foster Kimple, David Symthe, and James Wilson working on their design of the Barrier Islands Center bench.

After arriving and settling into our awesome lodge – an upgrade from Leadership Lab – at Kiptopeke State Park, we were introduced to our projects that our cohort will be working on for the week. Our cohort split into two groups; each group will design and build a helpful item for the Barrier Islands Center, here on the Eastern Shore.

My group will design and build a bench in memoriam of Art Schwarzschild, a UVA Professor of Engineering and friend of the Barrier Islands Center, and the others will make a lego table. We went to different parts of the lodge and started planning. We decided to make a basic, scale model of the bench out of popsicle sticks and hot glue. After planning and tweaking our prototype, we purchased supplies at the OBS hardware store, picking up 13 2×4 wood planks to make our bench that should hold 4 people.  

From Left to Right, Foster Kimple EDI’22, James Wilson EDI’22, and David Smythe EDI’22 is pictured with their popsicle prototype of a wooden bench in memoriam of Art Schwarzschild, UVA Professor of Engineering and a friend to the Barrier Islands Center on the Eastern Shore, VA.

Stay tuned for an update on this project and look for posts about the other project for the Barrier Islands Center – the lego table.

-Foster Kimple

2022 Summer Experience – Discussion of The Ten Faces of Innovation by Tom Kelley – Post by David Symthe

Pictured from left to right, James Wilson, Nicholas Rose, David Symthe, Foster Kimple, Kai Wang, and Stinson Moss, is the 2022 cohort of the EDI Fellows at Norfolk Academy, VA.

One of the first things our cohort did when we got to the Kiptopeke lodge was discuss the book The 10 Faces of Innovation by Tom Kelley. The 10 Faces of Innovation describes the 10 most common personalities amongst innovators. These personalities include the experimenter, the hurdler, the cross pollinator, the organizer, and many more.

Prior to the trip, each of us were tasked with picking 1 personality we identified with and 1 we wanted to be more like in the future, and then we wrote 1 paragraph about each. During our discussion we each shared the 2 faces of innovation we wrote about. In our group many people identified as either a hurdler or an experimenter and wanted to be more like a caregiver or an anthropologist. Also, we discussed the importance of bringing every different personality to the table when working on a project and how implementing all 10 of the faces of innovation can bring about great results.

EDI Field Day Booth – Post by AJ Keels EDI’21

May 4, 2019, Norfolk Academy hosted yet another Field Day. The theme this year was a county fair. This year the Engineering, Design, and Innovation Fellows reached out to host a game booth in the Midway. The four sophomores, AJ, Olivia, Charlie, and Caitlin teamed up with senior EDI Fellow, Patrick, to come up with a great idea of how to showcase EDI to the whole community on Field Day. The five of us decided to feature two design challenges, one from our early time as EDI Fellows and the other from another EDI Fellows’ project – the marshmallow challenge and the tin foil boat challenge, respectively. The goal of the marshmallow challenge was to build the tallest spaghetti structure that held a marshmallow at the very top. The boat challenge was a test of weight and buoyancy. After each person would build their boat, their prototype was placed in water to see how much weight the boat could hold before sinking.  

The first challenge was the marshmallow challenge. Unfortunately, most kids were not interested in this particular challenge. At the beginning of Field Day, we started out with a time constraint and a limited amount of material, but we later changed the rules to have no time constraint and include a more generous amount of material provided. Additionally, the materials we chose to use were not efficient. Both the recyclable tape and the compostable tape did not hold the structures up well, and the space where the children were able to build was quite small, so they did not have much space to build their towers. The boat challenge, however, was more popular than the marshmallow challenge. Many kids came back to try the challenge multiple times, and each time they progressed into a better boat design. This challenge also started with a time constraint, but we once again dismissed the rule in favor of limitless time for the building process.  

Overall, the kids enjoyed the boat challenge, and we were able to run the booth relatively smoothly. The set up was rough at first, but we eventually completed the necessary preparation. Additionally, if we were to run the booth again, we would plan to have more EDI Fellows to help with the booth. With the limited amount of staff, each person had to take two 2-h shifts, which proved to be a long time outside in the sun for each team member. We’re looking forward to Field Day next year, and we hope that we will be able to run the booth again with our new experience.  

Team Little Kids Update – Post by Maguire McMahon EDI’20

Hello. My name is Maguire McMahon and this year I worked with Keon Tavakoli on a project named “EDI in Aftercare.” Every other Wednesday Keon and I would venture down to the lower school to run build projects for children in 4th through 6th grade. These projects were designed to encourage fun learning while teaching lessons in teamwork, planning ahead, and so much more. Our first priority for the children is fun, followed by Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math learning.

One such session Keon and I ran was a competition where the children were put into small groups of 2 to 4 and given straws and tape and told to build the tallest, free-standing structure. Keon and I tested this project weeks in advance, and were able to, with the same materials and time limits, to build a tower around 30-36 inches in total. The children had 2 separate trials in order to make them learn from their mistakes. The first trial, one group was very successful, tying Keon and me at around 36 inches. But tragedy hit for Keon and my record during the second trial in which a different group reached over 50 inches, with less time, less tape, and fewer straws than the first trial.

Below are photos Keon and I took throughout a few of our trials. Some of the trials we ran include having the children build an aluminum boat that can hold the most weight, build the tallest, free-standing balloon structure, and a paper airplane challenge. Keon and I hope to continue this project through next year while hopefully opening up to 1st through 3rd graders as well.

Hydroponic Garden Update by Charlie Walker EDI’21 and Olivia Danielson EDI’21

Design Change: In 2018, all of the EDI Fellows were given a design challenge proposed by Jarod Haley, a 2020 Chesapeake Bay Fellow. This challenge was to create a prototype of an hydroponic garden. This garden would be used to grow plants which would be given to local food shelters. While the original project was to create a hydroponic garden, it has since been changed to be built as an aquaponic system. An aquaponic system is a system which utilizes nutrients produced from fish in order to grow plants. These nutrients are sent into the water in which the plants rest on, resulting in the growth of these plants. This change requires several changes to be made to the initial design.

On May 7th, Olivia Danielson ‘21 and I presented our project to the other EDI Fellows. We have created numerous CADs (computer assisted designs) for the project and are currently attempting to find a functional, safe, and energy efficient design to move this project into the building phase. Throughout all of our prototypes, we have encountered many problems regarding the design. The current design stands approximately 4 feet tall and uses gravity to pump the fish nutrients into the plant beds. This design, however, could have many potential problems due to its height as well as its requirement for electricity. In order to be built without the need of professional assistance, the structure must be under ~5 feet tall. Along with this problem, the structure requires a helpful amount of electricity to pump the water from the bottom layer back into the top.

Due to the problems from the current design, Olivia and I have been brainstorming an easier to build, simpler design which eliminates both its unneeded height and electricity dependence. This design will most likely be simplified into a square with tiers which each contain one of the three components needed for an aquaponic garden. If this design is approved, the building phase will be started shortly after.

Atomic Orbitals Model – Post by Caitlin Johnson EDI’21

The NA chemistry teachers approached Christopher Asuncion EDI’21 and I last November to create a combined model of atomic orbitals for their Chemistry classes. We have been working on the model for several months, and now it is finally complete!

White/Clear Sphere – 2s orbital. Dark Green Lobes – 2p orbital.

Background:Orbitals are the areas in which the electrons of an atom are located, and they form different shapes.  Our orbital model features the 1s orbital, the 2s orbital, and the 2p orbital, with the 1s and 2s orbitals having a spherical shape, and the 2p having a teardrop shape. The project started in November 2018 with some initial research, and ended in April 2019 with the final touch-ups.

Light Green Sphere- 1s Orbital. Clear Sphere – 2s Orbital. Dark Green Lobes – 2p Orbital .

Update: We developed the design in CAD, and 3D printed it once the design was finished. We settled on half of an atom, with a full 1s orbital in the middle. Additionally, we printed many prototypes, as we wanted to make the 2s orbital slightly translucent, which necessitated many trials. After three prototypes, we printed a final orbital model, where we then secured the halves together with magnets. This allowed the chemistry teachers to open the model and show the 1s orbital to their classes, while also letting them close the model back up. When the model was printed, however, we came across breakage at the points where the 2p orbital met the 2s orbital. I then used a special pen to use melted 3D printer filament to weld the 2p and 2s together. I also painted the 1s and the 2p in order to differentiate the two orbitals. I coated the 1s in glow-in-the-dark paint, and the 2p in dark green paint. Christopher and I are now working on a d orbital model, which has a more complicated shape, and will require more consideration in the process of creation.