Learning About Bridges

Langdon the Lion is pleased to present his education kit – Learning about Bridges!

Learning about Bridges contains twelve sessions on the basics of bridge building, aimed at children aged 8-11 years. Each session can be completed in about an hour and the activities are ideal for afterschool clubs and home-schooling as well as for classroom use.

The sessions can be used individually or the whole kit can be used for a term long programme.

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Arch Bridge Building Kit

Here are the instructions for producing an arch bridge building kit just like the one shown in the photo above. Maybe your school could get a helpful parent, grandparent or caretaker to help make an arch bridge using our plan.

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Session 1 – An Introduction to Bridges

In this session you will learn why bridges are so important to our lives, how the first bridges were built, and begin to learn the language of bridges.

Session 2 – Beam Bridges, Simple but Strong

In this session you will learn about the different types of load on bridges and will work in a team to find out more about what makes Beam Bridges strong.

Session 3 – Loads and Forces

In this session you will learn about the main forces which act on bridges – tension and compression – and understand why it is important for the forces to be balanced.

Session 4 – Beam Bridges Challenge

In this session you will take part in a challenge to build the strongest bridge you can using just ordinary paper and sticky tape.

Session 5 – Truss Bridges (Part 1)

In this session you will learn about the strongest shape for building bridges and other structures and will be introduced to a new kind of bridge.

Session 6 – Truss Bridges (Part 2)

In this session you will explore the truss bridge in more detail and learn some more of the language of bridges.

Session 7 – Arch Bridges (Part 1)

In this session you will be introduced to the arch bridge and learn some more new words in the language of bridges.

Session 8 – Arch Bridges (Part 2)

In this session you will learn more about how the Romans built arch bridges and have the chance to try building one yourself.

Session 9 – Materials

In this session you will find out about the main materials used to build bridges and try making some concrete.

Session 10 – Suspension Bridges

In this session you will be introduced to the longest span bridges in the world, get the chance to build a human suspension bridge and learn some more of the language of bridges.

Session 11 – Building Underwater

In this session you will learn about some of the techniques civil engineers use for building structures underwater, including how Romans built cofferdams, and will have a go at building one yourself.

Session 12 – Cable-stayed Bridges

In this session you will learn about another type of bridge and understand how it is different from a suspension bridge, as well as learning a few more words in the language of bridges.

Download All Lesson Plans

All our lesson plans have been packaged into one file if you would prefer to download in this way. Please be aware this is a large download.