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Mrs. Bibbey from Fort Collins CO is requesting Supplies through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

Poudre High School Cardboard Boat Regatta

My students need 35 gallons of glue to construct cardboard boats that they will test out on a lake.

  • $801 goal

This project expired on April 1, 2016.

Hooray! This project is fully funded

My Students

"Scientists dream about doing things. Engineers do them."-James A. Michener. Although we teach problem solving and critical thinking skills in American high schools, we need to give students collaborative tasks to challenge the application of these skills

My students are high school kids ranging in age from 15 to 18.

They attend a public high school with a traditional option and the International Baccalaureate Program. 40% of our school's population qualifies for free and reduced lunch. 18% of our students are English Language Learners. My physics classes are representative of this population. My students have worked hard to acquire the math skills to take physics. Almost all of my students are bound for a university education. This project keeps them interested in pursuing engineering at the collegiate level in addition to fostering team work and creativity.

My Project

The Physics Cardboard Regatta is a culminating engineering activity for the college preparatory physics classes each year. Students form teams and construct a boat made from corrugated cardboard and white glue. The goal is to build a boat that will travel the farthest before it sinks. The boat must carry a minimum of two students at least 100 feet to qualify. After that, the race begins to complete as many laps as possible in 15 minutes. May 2015 celebrated the 22nd year of the Physics Cardboard Boat Regatta. The winning boat carried two students 35 laps. Each year the designs improve. Granting each group a gallon of glue to build the boat eliminates a financial burden for the students. Students attend a neighborhood clean-up the week before the race in order to thank the homeowners for allowing us to test our boats on their lake. Each spring there is more support for the event. Students learn not only about engineering, but about team work and contributing to community.

Former participants in the boat race still contact me to share that this event inspired them to pursue a degree in engineering.

One former participant e-mailed me photos of cardboard bookshelves he created in college when he was short on cash. Since then, he returned to our school as a teacher and is instrumental in our geometry in construction engineering curriculum. The boat race not only inspires our high school STEM students, but it has grown into a community event.

Mrs. Bibbey
Grades 9-12
More than a third of students from low‑income households

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18 donors18 donors have given to this project.

This project will reach 90 students.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
GLUE WHITE GALLON EA - SCHOOL SMART • School Specialty $15.77 35 $551.95

Materials cost


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Total project cost


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Total project goal


How we calculate what's needed

Total project goal


17 Donors


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Project Activity

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