Energy and Power STEM Activities for School Children

There are several STEM activities for school children, specifically STEM activities at home. Regardless of what you’re doing, a significant chunk of your day-to-day routine depends on electricity.

Energy has become a hot topic today, with debates about investing in non-renewable energy or its renewable counterparts, such as solar energy.

While there are various STEM activities for school children to practice at home, this article will be discussing one of them- constructing a pizza box solar oven. This article will be about the materials needed and the steps involved to make this solar oven.

Constructing a Pizza Box Solar Oven

Do you have any idea that you can utilize solar energy to survive in the wilderness, power your home, and cook as well? This is an affordable and eco-friendly way of preparing meals.

Designing this will take at most an hour. The materials you will need to achieve this include:

  • Ruler
  • Pen/pencil
  • Pizza box (the bigger its size, the greater its efficiency)
  • Knife
  • Black paper (1 sheet)
  • White school adhesive
  • Plastic wrap (it should be free of holes)
  • Aluminum foil
  • Wooden skewer
  • Black electrical tape
  • More sunlight (75 Fahrenheit and above is ideal) and less wind

Steps to Construct

Note: Adult supervision or assistance is recommended for using the utility knife.

Preliminary Steps

  • Clean inside the pizza box so that it’s ready to be used as a solar oven.
  • Take out the cardboard liner on the box.

Actual Steps for this STEM Activity

  1. Use your pencil or pen and ruler to draw a square on top of the pizza box’s lid. The square should be an inch away from each edge of the box.
  2. Using the knife and a ruler as a precision guide, slowly cut three sides of the square you drew while leaving out the remaining inch surrounding the edges.
  3. Fold the cut part slightly back towards the remaining uncut side.
  4. Line the interior of the cut part with the foil and fold the ends of the foil on top of the cut part to keep it in place.
  5. Use the adhesive to secure the foil on the cut cardboard while ensuring the foil was laid smoothly.
  6. Use one layer of plastic wrap to cover the opening created by the cut cardboard.
  7. Use the black tape to attach the wrap to the ends of this opening and ensure that all ends are fully closed by the wrap.
  8. Put aluminum foil inside the box to cover the entire interior with foil when the box is shut.
  9. Use the adhesive to attach one sheet of black paper to the base of the box (in the center precisely) to function as the makeshift heat sink for the solar oven
  10. Finally, use your wooden skewer and some black tape to position the lid of your oven at roughly 90 degrees from the remainder of the box. This will let in the sunlight needed to cook your meal.

Final Words

To get the best out of your newly constructed solar oven, place it where it will get full and direct exposure to sunlight for a minimum of 30 minutes. Also, ensure that your oven’s lid is open and properly positioned (the flap or cut part, now foiled, has to face the sun).

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